Update 15: Viaduct

Still feels a bit weird to be parkin' the Air B'n'B in Tharsis again, doesn't it?
Somewhat, yes.
I had come to enjoy spending the nights out in the Scarlet Pillars, if I am being honest. The inconvenience of the geomagnetic pole was less than ideal, yes, but there was far less disturbing ambient noise late at night. I do not understand how some residents of Tharsis can still be awake and active so late.
Eh, some folks're just night owls. There's also all kinds of things people do that're suited far more for when the sun's gone down.
I do not follow. If one is indoors, then all the various ways of keeping indoor spaces lit would render night's darkness irrelevant. If one is outdoors, then I imagine doing anything would be far more of a hassle than simply waiting until daybreak.
Is it alright if I offer to explain the intangible nature of nighttime in cities like Tharsis later? We do have business to attend to in town, remember.

Mornin', Dalla.
Marlin! Oh, it's good to see you, dear. You and your friends are doing well, I hope.
We're all pretty good, yeah. Got some important business to take care of up in the new land, but we took a week and a bit to rest and recover, given the, y'know...
That mess up in the...Misty Ravine, was it? I don't quite know what happened there, but going by how many soldiers I had to help treat, it seems like it was very serious.
That's one way of puttin' it, aye.
Well, good on you all for keeping yourselves rested. Even if you've got important business, pushing yourselves after something so stressful will only get you hurt, or worse. I've seen far too many new explorers come back with such horrific injuries, so soon after they get their skyship...
Yeesh. Hope that's not getting to you.
I manage, don't worry. With that said, please do keep your and your friends' health in mind! I'd feel just awful if any of you were to get seriously hurt, or worse. Oh, and stop by more often. Maybe I'm being a bit too mothering, but just seeing you all puts my heart at ease.
'Course, especially now that taking the pole back to town doesn't put our guts through the wringer...

...Which is why I am travelling with them, at least for the time being.
Huh! Makes sense to me. Well, if ya ever wanna lookit how we make weapons n' armor out here in Tharsis, I can talk da boss inta— Oh, hey, Wales.
Mornin', guys.
Ah, good morning!
I did not realize you two were already up, let alone out and about.
Eh, we've been cooped up in the ship for a while, got kinda stiflin', so I figured I'd show the Medium around, help her meet the people we usually talk to.
Well, so far we've only met with Mister Ciaran and Miss Wynne here—
Bah, "Miss" nothin', I'm no teacher. 'Sides, ain't you da same age as Ray?
She was born a few months after I was, yes.
Then we're da same age. Just call me Wynne, yeah?
Very well, I suppose.
Don't think we three've got much to talk about, so we'll just leave you three be.
Ooh, ooh, Wales, next time you're here, I've got some ideas for makin' smaller carts I wanna talk with ya about!

Good morning, gentlemen.
Hello, Kirtida. I can see there are new requests on the board. Have people begun exploring the mountains?
Yes, though I have noticed that other guilds have been...reluctant, to put it lightly, to explore any of the smaller labyrinths, let alone the maze you discovered.
Other guilds're waiting for us to pave the path, mm?
What few feel safe even flying in the mountains, yes. I've seen several groups come back nursing some quite nasty injuries from getting caught in strong winds out there...
Times like this make me glad we've got an experienced skyship captain in our guild. On another note, got any Vessel customers coming in?
A few have come by, yes. Some of our regulars gave them odd looks for the first day or so, but they seem to have come to accept the Vessels' presence like they would any other patron. Wufan has come in, as well.
Well, that's a surprise! Even after the time we spent together, I wouldn't have pegged her for the barfly type.
She doesn't seem interested in drinking, but I do greatly enjoy talking with her. She... Hmm, how should I put this? Talking with her feels like talking with my favorite teacher.
Ahhhhhhh, I see. Never got that feeling with her, but I can see how she'd come across like that. Still, I'm surprised that she's taking the time to come into Tharsis at all.
I'm going to guess at least part of it is trying to act as an ambassador of sorts between Vessels and humans, given that the Medium is travelling with us.
Whatever the reason is, I am heartened every time I see her come through our doors. I can only hope it isn't long before our regulars start talking to her.

We've got three bar patrons to talk to, plus one special patron.

Man writing on parchment:
Hmm... Excuse me, you there.
You have the look of an explorer—have you been exploring the Sacred Mountains?
I haven't heard that name for them, but yes, my guild has started exploring there.
Ah, wonderful, I've been meaning to ask: have you been able to observe the behavior of the icy pincers? The large frozen-looking mantises.
Yes, we have, as much as simply being near one makes me worry.
I've heard rumors that they like to eat apples and rabbits, is that true?
I'm not sure about apples, but we were able to distract one of them with some rabbits, yes.
Fantastic, I have been waiting for days for someone that can confirm at least part of what I'd heard! If you wouldn't mind, next time you're near one, can you see how it reacts to apples?
I'll try to remember to try that, yes.
The virtuous Claudia:
Excuse me, ma'am, but you seem troubled.
Oh, am I that obvious? Well... My husband Al left for work without his lunch. This is just terrible, he must be starving by now. He went out to explore one of those new labyrinths up in the mountains, and I have no way of getting it to him. I've posted a request, but I guess it's so trivial that no-one wants to do it...
I see. I think someone may accept it far sooner than you think.
I hope so...
Dice-tossing Vessel:
Waitin' to play with someone?
Eh? Oh, nah, just testing my luck. You'll have to take my word for it, but I'm on a pretty lucky streak—three sixes, six times in a row!
Hoh. Kind of a shame you aren't playin' with someone, eh?
I guess. More importantly, though, I think I can make some progress on my new circle today. See, us arcanists, luck needs to be on our side to make the most of circles. It's hard to describe, but the way I'd put it is... "The pulse of the earth is also the pulse of fortune."
Here, the game is being mostly truthful about how infliction works. Remember, a character's infliction score is two parts LUC, one part TEC.

Vessel instructor:
Ah, you are members of Guild Daffodil, correct?
Correct. Do you need something from us?
Haha, no, no, I was just curious. I am an instructor sent from Vessel Town—I've been assisting new adventurers. It's sort of a way for us to repay Tharsis's assistance during the Hollow crisis. Obviously, you all don't need my help, but if you do come across any new adventurers, do feel free to send them my way.
I'll keep that in mind.
The Vessel instructor does serve an actual gameplay purpose. After we unlocked the ability to create arcanists, we were also given two Deep Forest Lores. In exchange for one Deep Forest Lore, the Vessel instructor can raise a character below level 20 up to level 20. While level 20 is still behind where even an underleveled party would be, taking a level 20 character into the 3rd Land is a lot easier than taking a level 1 character into the 3rd Land.

Ahh, good morning. It's been a bit since I last saw you three, or anyone else from your guild. Even Ace hasn't been here for a couple of weeks. Nothing's wrong, I hope.
No need to worry, we've just been resting since finishing our business in the Misty Ravine.
Taking care of yourselves, I like that. Nothing good would come from Tharsis's premier explorers overextending themselves, for either you or the city. You've already done us a great service, you know—that stagnant feeling I had when you came here has been blown away. Used to be that barely any of the new guilds could get themselves past the Old Forest Mine. Now, ever since you started tearing through the Lush Woodlands, and now the Misty Ravine, even the weaker newbies have been finding it within themselves to at least get to the Lush Woodlands.
I won't lie, that's both encouraging, but also a little embarrassing.
Hahaha! What for, man?
The mortifying ordeal of being known. I'm not exactly a public person, and the idea that there are others that are aware of me, perhaps even trying to learn what drive blades are, is... Well, you get the idea, clearly.
I do, I do. The only advice I can give is to try not to let it get to you.

You seem vexed, Ciaran.
What gave it away, the scowl, or the growl? I'm havin' one helluva time trying to figure out how to make it safer for skyships to fly up in the mountains. The snowfall that you can't gain altitude in, that's one thing, but all those tornadoes...
There are many tornadoes, yes, but I fail to see how they are an issue that requires your time. They can simply be navigated around, no?
For yeh, maybe, but not every guild's got an accomplished skyship captain in their ranks. I've seen way too many of my babies come back damaged, fractured, and out of order, to say nothin' of the guilds that steered 'em into the tornadoes. Some of them've needed to get treated at Dalla's clinic after they come back, it's that bad. Sooner I can figure out how to make the tornadoes a non-issue, the better.
...I had not considered that, but it does make sense.
Yeah. Yeh take care of yehselves, alright? If the skies up there are this dangerous, who knows what the labyrinths're like...

Oh, sorry, I was lost in thought. Please, come in.
No worries. Everything alright?
Yes, I was just pondering the conditions up in the Sacred Mountains. Temperatures drop at high altitudes, obviously, but even still, the change in environment at the Sacred Mountains seems rather extreme.
I've been thinking about this, actually. While at least some of it has to be the result of natural causes, obviously, I can't rule out some other force being at work here.
Because of the very deliberate obstructions we've dealt with so far, I assume. The wind currents that dissipate when the altars are filled, that sort of thing.
The vexing part, of course, is that there's still a fairly large gap between "there are deliberate obstructions put in our path by some long-gone people" and "said people were able to significantly alter the climate of a large mountain range." Can't draw any conclusions without hard proof, but, well...
What even would constitute hard proof here?
Indeed. Next time Xiaohu is here, I need to remember to talk with her regarding this. I will confess to only having a surface-level understanding of her magicks, but perhaps someone with sufficiently advanced control of it could have been responsible for the Sacred Mountains' environs.
I'm sure she'd be happy to give her thoughts next time she's here. Just...try to remember not to call runic manipulation "magic" to her.
Right, my mistake. Sufficiently advanced science can just come off as indistinguishable from magic sometimes, haha!
See? Margherita agrees.

'Fore we head back to the ship, mind telling us about those new requests?
Appled sciences:
This one is from Dalla. Much like how she wanted mushrooms from the Scarlet Pillars, she would like you to get her apples from the Sacred Mountains. She said that four should be enough. Like last time, I imagine that she will give a greater reward if you find rare apples for her.
Simple enough.
This quest is basically the same as the mushroom quest back in the Scarlet Pillars, same scoring system and everything. The main difference is that instead of the reward tiers being <= 4 points, 5 or 6 points, and >= 7 points, this time it's <= 6 points, between 7 and 9 points, and >= 10 points. You get 11000 total EXP and no items for the low tier, 13500 total EXP and two medica IIs for the middle tier, and 16000 total EXP and four medica IIs for the high tier.

Please find Snow Garden:
How about that one? The posting looks a bit short.
Yes, the client requested that anyone interested in this request speak to her for more details. She's actually here right now—over there, she's the girl with the thick glasses.
Curry courier:
...Oh, is this request from that woman sitting at the booth over there?
Yes, actually. You were talking with her earlier, I assume, so I can make this brief. Her husband forgot his lunch, and she wants you to deliver it to him. His name is Aldis, and he's a Tharsis soldier currently posted at the Cramped Nest in the Sacred Mountains. I would advise that this be handled quickly—there's no accounting for what happens when one is in a labyrinth with an empty stomach.
Accepting the quests has updated the bar patron list.

Itinerant artist Qulart:
Ah, miss? We accepted your request, the one about the Snow Garden.
A-Ah, sorry, I...startle easily. Thank you, thank you, I would like to get to the point. A-Are you familiar with snow flowers?
Hmmmm... Yes, actually, I have a vague recollection of these flowers, from long ago. I have never seen any others like them outside the mountains.
Wow... T-That makes things easier. Um, so, I've heard some of the guilds that come by here talking about a bunch of snow flowers blooming together in a particular area of the Sacred Mountains. Hence the, um, the name "Snow Garden." I'd like you to find it, so I can capture it in a painting. It was apparently somewhere in the northwest of the Sacred Mountains. If you find it, p-please tell me, as soon as you can.
We will keep an eye out for it.

itinerant artist q-bert?
There's nothing interesting about Claudia's new dialogue, basically just repeating what Kirtida told us.

If I may make a suggestion, we should deal with the treasure maps we can reach before doing anything else.
It's either now or later, so...yeah, let's do it now.

Huh, new type of gas. What's this one do?
Hmmmmmmmmmm... Looks like the kinda stuff that'd make beasties panic real bad. Strong stuff.
So it's a jar full of a hallucinogenic gas.
If you wanna be a Waylon about it, sure.
Okay. Please try not to break it.
Addle gasses attempt to inflict panic on all enemies, with a 30% base chance, and a -6 speed modifier. For comparison, Chaos Circle has a 35% base panic infliction chance on its initial cast, and 30% on its end-of-turn inflictions. Panic is a powerful ailment, making these a very nice find. We can't actually make them until a good way into the 4th Land, so getting three of them now is a boon. Ray stands a good shot of inflicting panic on something if she combines using addle gasses with Chaos Circle.

I've never seen an accessory so...vividly red before.
Hmm... This charm seems to mitigate the effect of fire-aspected runes. How very helpful!
Fire charms reduce the wielder's fire vulnerability by 50%. There's a boss fight that basically deals exclusively in fire damage later on, which this can help with, but otherwise it's not worth much. You don't run into fire damage that often in random encounters.

This is just a rock. Given that it's buried treasure, though, I'm gonna guess it's got some anti-rock runic effect on it?
Anti-petrification effect, but yes!
Stone charms reduce the wielder's petrification vulnerability by 80%. The only time where this might be useful is a long ways off, and even then, I'd consider it fairly marginal.

Another brilliance belt can't hurt, now that we have multiple characters who can make good use of a percentage-based max TP increase.

Ooh, another formaldehyde! Can never have enough of these.

Hm! This is quite a fine mace. What a shame it's been buried under so much ice for who knows how long.
The ancient Volcanic is an interesting ancient weapon! It's ostensibly a better version of a Volcanic, a mace we can find in the 3rd Maze, but...no, actually! A Volcanic has 91 ATK and two fire forges on it; the ancient Volcanic has 103 ATK and three open forge slots. Basically it's just a really good 3rd Land mace that requires one random enemy drop and one random gather material to forge.

One thing I forgot to note with the ancient rapier that also applies to the ancient Volcanic is that, for some reason, ancient weapons can be used by every class. Why? I'm not sure, personally.

Alright, that covers maps for now. The rest of them are, I think, at elevations we can't get to yet.

Allow me a brief diversion, because I forgot to encounter a monster in the Misty Ravine before we finished up there!

Black Claw
Level: 21HP: 452STR: 27TEC: 25VIT: 22AGI: 20LUC: 23DS: 71
EXP Given: 1653

Damage Vulnerabilities:
100% 100% 100%
150% 100% 100%

Disable Vulnerabilities:
125% 125% 75% 75% 50% 100%
100% 100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
  • Black Poison: Deals medium cut damage to one row of party members. Attempts to inflict poison on hit targets, with a high chance. The poison deals 51 to 60 damage each turn.
  • Black Poison: Deals 110% melee STR-based cut damage to one row of party members. Attempts to inflict poison on hit targets, with a 50% base chance. The poison deals 51 to 60 damage each turn. Has a speed modifier of ±0, and a base accuracy of 99%.
  • Black Claws always use Black Poison on the first turn.
  • Black Claws are guaranteed to use Black Poison if no player characters are afflicted with poison.
  • If any player characters are afflicted with poison, the Black Claw has a 50% chance to use a normal attack instead of Black Poison.
  • If this is the first turn, use Black Poison.
  • If any player character is afflicted with poison:
    • 50% chance to use Black Poison.
    • 50% chance to attack.
  • If none of the above happened:
    • Use Black Poison.
  • Ebony Fur: 70% chance. Sells for 131 en.
    • Studded Mail (40 DEF): Made from 1 Fiery Rind (Fire Bulb Drop 1) and 1 Ebony Fur. Costs 1180 en.
  • Ebony Claw: 50% chance. Sells for 143 en.
    • Talwaar (66 ATK): Made from 1 Ebony Claw and 1 Bud Tusk (Glutton Vine Drop 1). Costs 3070 en.
I was informed by my friends that I appeared to have neglected to mention the clawed apes. Well, I will not neglect to do so any longer! The Misty Ravine is home to nocturnal, tailed apes, with heavy upper body musculature and claws laced with a toxin designed to inflict pain. It's quite good at it, too. Being inflicted with its toxins can debilitate its prey to such a degree that they simply stop moving, incapable of willing their bodies to continue. However, they have an instinctual fear of fire, so bring a torch if you are coming to the Misty Ravine at night... Besides your regular light torch, I mean.
Black claws only show up at night. Time-based monsters are not something EO4 does often, so it completely slipped my mind until now.

The fact that black claws slipped my mind until now may have been a blessing in disguise, because these things are actually pretty nasty! They can hit an entire row at once, and have good odds of inflicting poison while doing it. 51 to 60 poison damage would've especially been rough with the sorts of max HP numbers we were coming into the Misty Ravine with. Even with the HP-increasing pork, our frontliners had anywhere from 130 to 180 max HP.

Unfortunately, we are now well past the point where a black claw would actually be interesting to fight, so I'll just skip to the result screen. It does help that, at least on Misty Ravine B1F, black claws only ever show up alone.

Berund Atelier has the following new items in stock:

I had not actually sold Hollow Queen's drop until now, somehow. The forest crown is a very good bit of equipment. +10% max TP and +2 LUC are great bonuses for a non-accessory piece of equipment, especially for arcanists.

Alright, that's Appled sciences taken care of.

Goodness, these apples seem...quite large. I can see why Dalla provided a sizable barrel. This one is nearly the size of my head... I shall deliver these to her. Make yourselves comfortable while I do that.

Ah, good, I was hoping the crimson apples would impress her. They certainly looked good...
I thought they looked like candied apples, a bit.
I did not taste any of them, but judging by Dalla's reaction, they're quite delicious. I can only hope it does not take her long to come up with meals that utilize them... Now, here is your reward.

We also get our storage space at the inn expanded.

I'm not going to show off the skill point investments, since I won't be using this party to actually do any exploring this update.
♪ No music ♪

Already time to get back to it, huh?
Is that a problem?
Did I sound like it was?
I am quite interested in seeing what the labyrinths in this new region are like, so this works out well.
Just remember to mind Xiuan, yeah? Wouldn't do us much good if she gets hurt.
Do we...need to bring her into the labyrinth with us? This seems unsafe.
I actually requested that I be brought along! I would like to see first-hand what it is like to be an explorer.
...Well, it's hard to imagine a better group for making sure you stay safe, between Ace, Eine, and Waylon. Maybe if Naijou was here as well...?
Me? I wasn't aware that I provided defense.
Maybe not in the same way Ace does, but, well, you're heavily armored, and you...present a large facade.
Ah. You mean my armor makes me appear threateningly large to the wildlife?
W-Well, um... Yes.
I hadn't thought of that aspect of it before.
...Of course, the fact that I'm swinging around technological monstrosities for weapons that can obliterate monsters in a single swing could also be construed as defense through offense by making me a priority target.

Before we go in, I used the vigor book I found earlier on Merula. Every bit of survivability she can get helps.

Hmm? Why are we stopping here? This isn't the maze, if I remember correctly.
We have a request to deliver a soldier's lunch to him. The sooner we can finish this, the better.

Yes, we're here to deliver someone's lunch.
...Unfortunately, I can't remember what his exact name is right now.
Ahaha, well, that might be a problem. We've all got pretty similar names... Let's see, there's Albert, Alistair, Alfred, Aldis—
Aldis, that was it.
Right, he's stationed...uh... Okay, going by your map, he's around B3. Due north of us.
Thank you, we'll try to be quick about this.
Don't worry about it. Hopefully Al's not starving without his lunch.
...Aldis, not— Ah, you get it. You know, our group's called Team A back in Tharsis. Though, uh, my name is Ben...
With that, the soldier returns to his position. You head into the labyrinth in search of your soldier.

...Every wall looks like they're filled with shortcuts. Holes everywhere.
You peer into the crevice, but the icicles inside block your view of whatever is on the other side. A quick look around shows that there are similar crevices dotting the walls of the cave. You wonder if you should try squeezing through the crevice, or find another way to ascertain the way forward.
Much as I'd like to play a guessin' game where the punishment is some of my skin gettin' ripped off, we should look for some other way to figure out what's safe and what isn't.
...Does anyone else hear something squeaking?

What is that creature? It somewhat resembles a flying rat.
That'd be a bat, lass.
A bat that flew through the walls without issue. I say we see where it goes next.

Okay, let's see if that crevice is safe...

If you go through a crevice that isn't safe, you take damage, and get booted back to where you entered it from. The gimmick of the Cramped Nest is that you have to watch the bat FOEs and only enter crevices that they pass through.

Izzat...a beetle? Sure does look like a beetle's horn.
It's the biggest beetle I've ever seen, if that's the case. Looks like those claws could chop me clean in half, hoho!
...Okay, I got my japes out of the way, let's smash it.

Claw Beetle
Level: 27HP: 372STR: 30TEC: 29VIT: 30AGI: 25LUC: 23DS: 75
EXP Given: 2383

Damage Vulnerabilities:
25% 25% 50%
150% 100% 100%

Disable Vulnerabilities:
100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
100% 100% 150%
  • Shell Wall: Redirects attacks from another enemy to the user.
  • Shell Wall: Redirects attacks from another enemy to the user. Has a speed modifier of +20.
  • Claw beetles will use Shell Wall if there are other enemies, and none of them are also using Shell Castle.
  • If this is the first turn, and the party was blindsided:
    • Attack.
  • If the claw beetle is the only enemy in the battle:
    • Attack.
  • If the current turn is even:
    • Attack.
  • If no other enemies are using Shell Wall, any player character is attacking, and the claw beetle isn't the only enemy alive when it takes its turn:
    • Use Shell Wall.
  • If none of the above happened:
    • Attack.
  • Hard Shell: 60% chance. Sells for 129 en.
    • Fluted Armor (62 DEF): Made from 1 Hard Shell and 1 Soft Patagium (Cave Bat Drop 2). Costs 4260 en.
    • Hard Leather (69 DEF): Made from 1 Zapper Skin (Zapper Frog Drop 1) and 1 Hard Shell. Costs 5290 en.
    • Fire Charm (+50% Fire Resist): Made from 1 Hard Shell. Costs 3500 en.
  • Beetle Sickle: 50% chance. Sells for 138 en.
    • Jamadhar (89 ATK, 1 Slot, +2 VIT): Made from 1 Beetle Sickle and 1 Steel Earth (Mine: Golden Lair B3F (Cold)). Costs 6730 en.
    • Hunter Bow (75 ATK, 3 Slots): Made from 1 Beetle Sickle. Costs 5530 en.
  • Broken Horn: Obtained by killing the enemy with bash damage. 100% chance. Sells for 151 en.
    • Slash Charm (+50% Cut Resist): Made from 1 Broken Horn. Costs 2000 en.
If there is any greater reason to ensure you don't simply adventure with martial weapons, let it be known that the claw beetle will mock any attempts to destroy it such. Its heavy, steel-like shell has evolved to repel attacks from prey and predators alike, and it will even defend weaker allies—it's a very honorable creature. Your best bet is to attempt to use its armor against it, by funneling severe heat through its armor to cook it internally. I heard tell of a similar species of ant creature in another land once... Ah, but that's beside the point.
Claw beetles are usually used in EO games as punishment for parties that don't have access to at least some form of elemental damage, and they're no different in EO4. The main difference here is that, if other enemies are present, they can make things more difficult for you by taking hits for enemies that can do things besides normal attacks.

The solution them, then, should be fairly obvious: make sure you've got some methods of dealing elemental damage. EO4's not exactly lacking in those, between landsknechts' Links, runemasters in general, and even one-off random elemental skills like Bolt Strike on fortresses, or Ice Slash and Fire Strike on bushi.

Huh, that really does work.
Oh, if you hit something with just the right part of a mace, it messes with their nerves and makes them feel like they got electrocuted. Or, uh, something like that, anyway.
Perhaps it's something more arcane that you're just not aware of?
Either or.

Alright, took a couple of whacks, but it's down.

That's the conditional taken care of.

It's been quite some time since we last saw grasshoppers, hasn't it?
Weird place for them to show up. Wouldn't really have taken them for a cave-dwellin' kinda monster.

Demon Hopper
Level: 27HP: 302STR: 29TEC: 29VIT: 23AGI: 29LUC: 21DS: 71
EXP Given: 1589

Damage Vulnerabilities:
100% 100% 100%
125% 100% 100%

Disable Vulnerabilities:
100% 100% 150% 100% 100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
  • Crushing Kick: Deals heavy bash damage to one party member, with splash damage. Very fast, but slightly inaccurate.
  • Crushing Kick: Deals 180% melee STR-based bash damage to one party member, with splash damage. Has a speed modifier of +10, and a base accuracy of 90%.
  • Demon hoppers are slightly more likely to use normal attacks at high HP, and far more likely to use Crushing Kick at low HP.
  • Demon hoppers, when using Crushing Kick, will not target party members who are already afflicted with paralysis.
  • If the demon hopper's HP is below 50%:
    • If all player characters are afflicted with paralysis:
      • Attack.
    • If the above did not occur:
      • 80% chance to use Crushing Kick, targeting player characters who are not afflicted with paralysis.
      • 20% chance to attack.
  • If the above did not occur:
    • 40% chance to use Crushing Kick, targeting player characters who are not afflicted with paralysis.
    • 60% chance to attack.
  • Tough Leg: 60% chance. Sells for 87 en.
    • Viking Sword (81 ATK): Made from 1 Tough Leg. Costs 6290 en.
  • Hopper Wing: 40% chance. Sells for 102 en.
    • Cotardie (44 DEF): Made from 1 Hopper Wing. Costs 2310 en.
Another breed of the gargantuan Tharsian grasshopper. There are vestigial evolutionary facets to their hunting patterns, but otherwise, simply evade their strikes and strike back.
Demon hoppers, on their own, aren't terribly noteworthy. They deal physical damage to multiple people at once, though the impact of that is somewhat lessened by Crushing Kick dealing splash damage instead of being outright row-target.

If you're wondering why their AI heavily prioritizes targeting based on paralysis inflictions, that's due to demon hoppers actually being derivatives of an enemy made for a QR code quest, which we will not get to do for a while. Oh well.
Planned obsolescence my beloathed

Is that a dance, or are you readying yourself to strike...?
Both, lad. Here, you can help me demonstrate—go whack that hopper.

Very well then...

Hoohoo! Now, admittedly, I usually do better on my own, but there's fun to be had in following others' rhythms, eh?

Can you do that sort of dance when you're standing in the back, though?
Of course, lass, what sort of dancer would I be if I couldn't? Again, let me show you. Go ahead, hit 'em.

Just a matter of stayin' on my toes and payin' good attention.
Is it weird if I say "cool"? Because that's cool, but I feel like that's not the kind of compliment—
Nah, call it what it is.
...I, um, couldn't help myself, ahaha. Forgive me for intruding on your— I'm unnecessarily apologizing again, aren't I?
It's a hard habit to break, I know.

Good! Great! Awesome! Outstanding! Amazing!

Going by the echoing squeaks, I think the way forward lies in that middle path.

Up there, as well.

Huh, that bat's smaller than the ones flying through the walls. Think it's a kid?

Cave Bat
Level: 27HP: 352STR: 29TEC: 29VIT: 23AGI: 27LUC: 24DS: 77
EXP Given: 1742

Damage Vulnerabilities:
100% 150% 100%
100% 100% 150%

Disable Vulnerabilities:
30% 100% 100% 150% 100% 100%
150% 100% 100%
125% 100% 100%
  • Annoying Waves: Attempts to bind one party member's head, with a high chance. Very fast.
  • Annoying Waves: Attempts to bind one party member's head, with a 70% base chance. Has a speed modifier of +10.
  • Cave bats will summon other cave bats if they are the last enemy in the battle.
  • If the battle goes on longer than 10 turns, when a cave bat attempts to summon another cave bat, it will summon a patrol bat instead.
  • If a cave bat is not summoning another enemy, it is very likely, but not guaranteed, to use Annoying Waves instead of a normal attack.
  • If the cave bat is the only enemy in the battle, and a patrol bat has not been summoned yet:
    • If the current turn is greater than or equal to 10, summon a patrol bat.
    • If the above did not occur, summon a cave bat.
  • If the above did not occur:
    • 70% chance to use Annoying Waves, targeting player characters whose heads are not bound.
    • 30% chance to attack.
  • Bat Fang: 60% chance. Sells for 117 en.
    • Ring Dagger (69 ATK, 3 Slots): Made from 1 Bat Fang. Costs 3050 en.
  • Soft Patagium: 50% chance. Sells for 133 en.
    • Fluted Armor (62 DEF): Made from 1 Hard Shell (Claw Beetle Drop 1) and 1 Soft Patagium. Costs 4260 en.
The bats in the Golden Lair can echolocate with a frequency that seals the hearing and magical abilities of nearby creatures, then rebounds off of them to reach other bats in the nearby area. They hunt in packs, and can call upon much more powerful patrolling brethren to strike in a pinch. The need for non-martial strikes exacerbates the issue—if a set of these bats attacks, it's best to take them out as quickly as possible.
Cave bats are both a moderate nuisance, but also a ticking time bomb. Head binds are a tad more annoying than they were in the 2nd Land, mostly due to the higher concentration of enemies in the 3rd Land that are difficult to take out without TEC-based attacks, which are all shut down by head binds. Claw beetles are a great example of this, actually, since even if you have composite attacks (Links, for example), you'd still prefer to take them out with a runemaster, due to the effect of Runic Guidance.

On top of Annoying Waves, cave bats can also irritate you through their ability to summon more cave bats. Leaving a cave bat as the final enemy will prolong the battle, and if you end up with multiple cave bats in one battle, the game expects you to finangle your damage such that you kill all of the remaining cave bats at once. Even this has an extremely dangerous wrinkle, though, in that if the battle goes on for too long, cave bats will summon patrol bats, their FOE version, which trade the ability to bind your party members' heads for heavy physical damage. That's bad, to put it lightly.

Hey, Wales, you alright?
...Ace, are you saying something?
Uh, yeah, what's the matter?
Speak up, I can't— Ah. This is the bat's fault, isn't it.

Having fast characters never hurts when you deal with enemies that like to summon other enemies when they're left alone.

Alright, bat, where're you leading us?

Oh! There's various odd minerals all over this room—some of these are bound to be useful.

So, in addition to the pithced combat with monsters you find yourself engaged in, and the myriad challenges posed by the physical labyrinth...you all must also train yourselves in more mundane occupations to gather resources?
Well, it isn't so much "training" so much as just applying what we're already familiar with.
You'd be surprised how much I already knew about smashing rocks to get better rocks before I came to Tharsis.
Obtained tiger's eye x3 and chalcedony x2.
Definitely make sure you grab both of the mining materials from the Cramped Nest, they make pretty decent equipment.

Bah, almost got it.

Cool, they know how to say "SOS" at each other.

The cave bats' summoning can get very annoying, very quickly if you don't kill them at the same time.

I saw one of the larger bats flying through here before we got attacked.

Phew, it's not as cramped out here.
Now that it's easier to look around...there are quite a few strange rock formations, I'm noticing.
That's a defining feature of caves, yes. Erm, "caves" as in the literal sort of cave, not the colloquial term for smaller labyrinths.
Sometimes you'll find large openings in caves with some of the most beautiful sights you've ever seen. Beautiful crystals, completely still pools of water...
Huh! You've done recreational caving, lass?
...Not recreational, but I've had to navigate a handful of caves before, yeah.

Somethin' wrong, lad?
Our pack is...full to bursting...
...Yipes, you're not kiddin'!
I assume there are no objections to going back to town to unload for now.

Dat's a lotta junk. Somethin' happen?
For once, no. Just a productive few hours exploring.
Berund Atelier has the following new items in stock:

If you're not into dealing with customizing daggers, luck staves are pretty alright for runemasters and especially arcanists. +6 IS is decent for a weapon you can't forge yourself.

Slash charms are a good opportunity for me to make a point. While, broadly, damage-reducing accessories are heavily nerfed compared to EO3, due to the removal of accessory stacking, the physical damage-reducing accessories (and even elemental ones, for certain bosses) can provide incredible value when equipped on a fortress. This is stating the obvious, but when they're taking hits for other party members, the amount of damage they take adds up rapidly.

Think of it this way: if a fortress tanks all three hits of a row-target attack that deals damage matching their current accessory, instead of taking three attacks, they're only taking one-and-a-half. Taking a party-target attack would go from five attacks to two-and-a-half. Even if your fortress still dies from that, dying later means that they still protect more party members, which can be the difference between having to deal with only one death, versus two or even three.

Of course, it's not quite this easy... EO4's designers seemingly did account for this, and there are a handful of enemies that deal composite damage in order to bypass both physical mists and damage-resisting accessories that would otherwise cover most or even all of their attacks. Remember, in EO, when you attack with a composite damage type (say, cut + fire), the game calculates the damage against whatever element the target has a higher vulnerability to. This is not at all common, but it does apply to a few bosses that otherwise would have a severe weakness to fortresses absorbing a bunch of damage with one of the physical-reducing accessories.

One of them even has the gall to have an attack that deals cut + stab + bash damage, something that would be completely pointless in any other EO game. Here, it means there's no way to avoid that attack being calculated against a 100% vulnerability, even if you have an accessory to reduce one physical damage type and use a mist to reduce another.

I'll have more to say about enemy attacks that deal composite damage, but it's safe to say that they are nasty, player-unfriendly jank and there's a good reason none of the later EO games use them.

Hel-lo! Ahhh, that scared me...
A-Are all of these "FOEs" so large?
Well, no. Some of them are far larger.
Oh dear...

Least bein' up close and personal with one makes it easy to see where it scurries off to.

Obtained tiger's eye x2 and chalcedony x1.

Obtained tiger's eye x2 and chalcedony x1.

Aegis Ward, well, does what it says in the screenshot: nullifies all elemental damage the party takes for the rest of the turn. While this is usually of dubious usefulness for random encounters, since the dangerous attacks there are more often than not physical, it can provide a lot of breathing room for FOE and especially boss fights.

Hold up, hold up. You're Aldis, right?
I...I must be hallucinating... Oh no... I'm going to die. Damn it... I'm sorry, Dia...
...Bah. Take the damn food.
All of a sudden, the soldier regains his wits as he snatches the lunchbox from you and shovels the food down.
Wow, I literally came back to life! Man, that hit the spot! Oh...hey, did you need something?
Nope. You, uh. You just keep scarfing that stuff down. We're good.
You do not even need to ask... This man is clearly Aldis. It is hard to believe, but the request is now complete and you have a report to make. You quietly walk away...
I am confused. Could that not have been an act put on by one of his teammates to get a free lunch? He was certainly dramatic enough for it.
No. I have met plenty of liars. None of them were quite as much as Aldis was.

Daffodil food delivery service, reportin' in: we got Aldis his lunch.
Good, good. Did Team A's names give you any issue finding him?
No, but some warnin' would've been appreciated, eh?
Perhaps, but you fulfilled the request either way.
Who organizes these squads of soldiers? I have to imagine having such similar names causes at least a few headaches.
Well, the guildmaster is responsible for the initial organization of squads...but the Count is the one that has the final say. And, well, both Marlin and Waylon know how he can be sometimes.
"Anything goes, so long as it's interesting," I'm guessin'.
Ah, yes, you remember. Much like how I need to remember to give you your reward.

The head hammer lets us apply head bind forges to our weapons.

We had to kill...many bats before we found the soldier we were looking for.
Berund Atelier has the following new items in stock:

Y-You are engaging an FOE in combat?!
This is dangerous, to be sure, but the sooner we can log information about FOEs and what materials can be found on them, the better.

Patrol Bat
Level: 34HP: 1984STR: 38TEC: 33VIT: 32AGI: 34LUC: 28DS: 89
EXP Given: 12689

Damage Vulnerabilities:
100% 125% 100%
100% 100% 125%

Disable Vulnerabilities:
20% 30% 20% 30% 50% 20%
10% 10% 20%
50% 50% 50%
  • Claw Dance: Deals 4 to 5 instances of heavy cut damage to random party members. Fast, but slightly inaccurate.
  • Claw Dance: Deals 4 to 5 instances of 120% melee STR-based cut damage to random party members. Has a speed modifier of +6, and a base accuracy of 90%.
  • Patrol bats will always use Claw Dance on the first turn.
  • Patrol bats are more likely to use Claw Dance when they are at low HP.
  • If a Rafflesia is in the battle:
    • Use Claw Dance.
  • If Claw Dance has not been used yet:
    • Use Claw Dance.
  • If the Patrol Bat's HP is below 50%:
    • 80% chance to use Claw Dance.
    • 20% chance to attack.
  • If none of the above occurred:
    • 50% chance to use Claw Dance.
    • 50% chance to attack.
  • Giant Wing: 100% chance. Sells for 614 en.
    • Sneaking Plate (64 DEF, +2 AGI): Made from 1 Giant Wing. Costs 4510 en.
The aforementioned patrolling brethren of the cave bats. Their wings are coated in razor-sharp microfiber fur that has a decent shot to even tear through a claw beetle's armor. However, they aren't very complex hunters—stopping their sight or their wings renders them utterly helpless.
Patrol bats, in contrast to cave bats, are very capable of hurting you. Each hit of Claw Dance hurts enough that using Ace using Taunt when a patrol bat isn't blinded actually runs a good risk of her getting killed very quickly.

Thankfully, Claw Dance's strength is balanced by the fact that it's the only skill patrol bats have. They can only ever hit you once, or hit you multiple times with Claw Dance. If you blind them, then they can't do much. If you bind their arms, then they really can't do much.

Ow, ow, ow...

I can't say that's unexpected, but it's still worrying.

Still standin'.

Please try not to bite off more than you can chew.

Remember: when you're dealing with a multi-hit attack, and you've got Taunt up, the Defend command is a 50% damage reduction on physical attacks. It's way more effective than what a lot of skills can provide.

Stupid thing moves too fast for me to block everything.
I am fine, please worry about yourself!

Are you going to throw your sword at the FOE?
Oh, the loud rumbling made me think you were about to use it like an explosive of some kind.
You're about half correct on how this works, at least.

Those deep breathing exercises really are something, Eine.
I am still somewhat lost on how they help you maintain your vitality, but far be it from me to complain.

Right, that's enough makin' sure we're safe back here, lemme at it.

Ugh, I don't understand why this isn't working...

Meh, it's not so tough when it's not going all-out.

Hm. That's the first time in a while that an enemy has been left standing from a concentrated cartridge...

The bad news here is that the patrol bat is about to start heavily spamming Claw Dance. The good news is that this battle will only last for one or two more turns.

Hey... Jumpin' in front's my job...
Right, but if I hadn't done that, you'd have gotten knocked out, eh?
...Right. Thanks— Ugh, my chest...

Well done, everyone!
Thanks, lass.
I must admit, I was not expecting something with such thin wings to be able to injure Ace so severely...
Huh, wings? What've those got to do with it? Dunno if you could see from back there, but that stupid bat kept biting me.
B-Biting you, I see. Ah, Ace, when we return to the ship, please let me administer some antidotes to you.
What, like, antidotes for poisoning? My guts feel fine.
No, antidotes for the myriad dangerous micro—
Okay, got it, dump as many bottles into my mouth as you need.
You didn't let him finish saying what he wants to cure, though.
Soon as he said "micro," that's all I needed to hear.
Nothin' good ever starts with "micro," that's what I say.

Microburst is a non-elemental spell that deals 350-450% MAT damage and can inflict Bleed. It's good for synergy with the Trickster's Vampire skills, and to bridge the gap between Shock and Bolt Avenge, or 'the rest of the game' and 'Frostburn' as the case may be depending on the game. Not the most important skill in the game, but I take umbrage with that.
Aye, aye, lass, I see. Just, uh, don't let our resident magiophysicist in on—
"Frostburn," you say?

Nothing much to talk about with these skill point investments.

One final material for you today, Wynne.
Dag, dis wing's longer than when I pose like a T. Kinda freaky.
And yet, that bat's huge wingspan was the least of our problems...
What, it didn't try usin' it to cut'cha or, I'unno, blow you up against the wall?
No, it just kept repeatedly biting Ace.
Why even grow dat big if ya just gonna bite whatever's attackin' ya? Monsters don't know how good dey got it, I tells ya.

My name is Wynne, yo? t-poses I'm da blacksmith's apprentice, yo? t-poses Uh-huh? t-poses And I'm gettin' a lady boner for all these materials? t-poses
Does that make you run faster, like a bird?
No. No, it doesn't.
If you're playing TF2 back in 2007, it makes you run slower than if you'd just played Scout.

A-poses are basically t-poses, shut up.
Berund Atelier has the following new items in stock:

The sneaking plate we unlocked is not only a good increase to Merula's defenses, but also makes her a bit more evasive. As that praise might imply, I buy it for her.

Someone remind me, that Snow Garden we were looking for was supposed to be around here, right?
...Ah! I see something! Off the...larboard side?
Technically correct, lass, but most sailors—both on the sea and in the sky—will look at you funny if you call it that. Call it "port" instead.

Now that I've given my nautical lesson for the day... Yep, straight below. Looks like what we're lookin' for.
As you move through the blizzard on your skyship, you reach a hidden spot where sunlight filters through. You emerge from the ship to find an ocean of flower-like objects made of snow. They sparkle in the sunlight...
These are some weird-looking flowers. Never seen anything like them.
They resemble Lagaardian snow blooms somewhat, but... Well, these aren't flowers. They're a collection of crystals in a flower-like shape.
It's a shame that flying here is so dangerous. More people deserve to witness this sight...
Ehh, right now, maybe, but after enough people've gone where we've gone, it'll be easier to get here. Probably.
In the meantime, hopefully the artist's painting of this will suffice.

Hi, we found where the Snow Garden is.
I-Is that true?!
I...wouldn't have said that if it wasn't.
I just had this hunch you'd found it. It was the oddest thing! B-But quick, point it out to me on your map!

Here. Please, um, be careful of the large gator-like creatures wandering around there. You can distract them with fish.
Gators...love...fish... O-Okay, I'll be back soon!

I wonder why she did not ask you to escort her.
Too excited, maybe.

Well, if it wasn't there, we'd have bigger things to worry about.
I mean, lass, we were just there. If the Snow Garden had somehow moved, the world'd have suddenly changed into one where large chunks of land can suddenly...
...Right, that joke made more intuitive sense in my head, hoho.
U-Um, anyway... There were monsters all around, so I didn't have time to paint it, but... I was happy just to see it for myself! Snow flowers are rare because water can only harden into that crystal shape in places where the air is thin.
So, that kinda place can only exist on a mountain.
Oh, is that is why it feels harder to breathe up there?
Yep. Don't really get all the chemistry and geology stuff, but the higher up you go, the less stuff-we-need is in the air.
But by that same token, it can lead to miracles of nature like the Snow Garden. For so many of those crystalline flowers to "bloom" in one place...it just proves how amazing the Sacred Mountains are! A-Anyway, thank you all. I dropped off the reward, so you can go accept it whenever.

Safe to assume you know we're done?
Correct. Well done. You know, it is nice to handle requests like this every now and then. I would love to see the Snow Garden for myself... Although, given the temperatures in the Sacred Mountains, perhaps it would best to wait for a painting. In any case, here is your reward.

Hamaos restore 100 HP and 25 TP to one party member. They're not great as either HP restoration, or TP restoration. No reason to throw it away, but no reason to consciously farm them once we can do so, either.

This is a good stopping point, I feel. Next time: we enter the 3rd Maze. It's got a lot of differences from how mazes normally work, and its own internal sets of rules that you always need to keep in mind when exploring it. Get Psyched!

...Tah! Hah! Nnnnnah!
Dat rapier's an actual weapon? I kinda thought it was just for show, heh.
Wynne? What are you—
I gave her permission to come aboard! Think that's how you say you invited someone onto a ship, anyways.
Ah. Is there a special occasion for this that I'm unaware of? Is this a date, perhaps?
Nah, I just wanna see whatcha ship's like. It ain't every day a guild comes by dat uses somethin' besides what Ciaran gives 'em.
Fair enough.
Anyway, yeah, what's with dat rapier, anyways? Carryin' it around everywhere's gotta be a pain, and... Well, don't mean ta offend ya, but ya don't got the fightin' look. I mean, ya gotta look dat could kill, but... Y'know.
...Thank you for sharing that... Anyway, this rapier belongs to one of my fathers. I...ahem, borrowed it the morning I set off for Tharsis. How should I put this... It's a reminder of what I have to return to, once our guild dissolves. I don't believe it's ceremonial, but I also don't know the first thing about fighting with rapiers.
I getcha, I getcha. I know Shelly uses rapiers a bunch, but... Ehh, she and other landsknechts don't really use 'em like da boss expects. She's kinda old-fashioned like dat. Keeps expectin' 'em to be used for stabbin' through armor gaps and some good ol' fashioned armor piercin'.
She expects them to be used for something more akin to fencing, then.
Is she aware that monsters tend to lack the sorts of weaknesses that rapiers can exploit? Plus, well, we explorers do not fight each other, as a rule.
Rule's that if some other guild pisses you off, you just beat 'em to the next floor or labyrinth.
Of course, no-one is outpacing us, so that's rendered moot in our case...
Makes sense. Still, never know what sorta weird crap might happen to ya!
That is part of why I am practicing with it, yes. I am...hardly affecting the armored dummy I am practing on, though.
Ooh, ooh, I can help ya! Da boss does dis thing with rapiers all da time, kinda a party trick. Mind if I use ya rapier?
I...suppose not. Please do not damage it, though.
Nah, dis thing's gonna be fine. Da dummy, on da other hand—!
...And dere ya go. Nothin' to it. 'Side from knowin' it, a'course.
The dummy has been...cleanly pierced through...
That's rock!
It's, uh, da only thing I know how ta do wit' a weapon, but still.
Yo, Einz, ya alright?
Oop, he's got stars in his eyes. Think he's gonna be studyin' the dummy for a while. Wanna go see our kitchen? Got an entire walk-in freezer there, somehow.
Dat's a helluva thing ta explain with just "somehow!"


Like how you opened your last letter, I have to apologize for taking a while to get back to you! I'll get the big news out of the way: Uncle Ranger's opening a restaurant. Yes, it's a labyrinth cuisine. He's been working extremely hard on getting everything in order, going back and forth between here and Lagaard constantly. Regina's still managing FOEbucks, apparently, which took me completely by surprise. I don't think you've ever met her, but she and your uncle had an interesting rapport back when we were exploring. I'm sure you remember the apple sauce bison steak that he used to cook for you; well, that was the result of a lot of arguing between him and Regina. Trust me, I do mean "a lot." Sometimes I'd be up late at night reading or having trouble going to bed, and long after everyone else had gone to sleep, I'd hear him only just then coming back to the inn. When I asked him about it, all he'd say is that he and Regina had a very long discussion about fruit sauce and meat. Confused the heck out of me back then, but it eventually made sense.

Anyway, my point is that while a lot of our recipes came from Apicius, a good amount were also made as the result of your uncle and Regina working together. Small wonder, I guess, that he wants to work with her again. Judging by the amount of new recipes and ingredient samples he came back with, it sure seems like she's eager to work with him, too. Try to give me some word ahead of time before you finish your adventures out in Tharsis; I'm sure you'd love to meet her, and she'd love to meet Ranger's protégé.

Regarding your guild, it sounds like you signed up a good crew, which is great to hear. (Dad and Papa used to make jokes about "signing up a good crew" whenever they were putting together casts and, well, crews. Apparently it's something the guildmaster back in Etria used to say over and over.) I will admit, hearing that you're adventuring with a former pirate made me worry a bit, to say nothing of the fact that she knew who we are! You are right, though, that she's the granddaughter of two of Dad and Papa's old comrades. You probably don't remember it, but you met them when you were little; Sigrid and Momoe Tsukuda-Vanderbilt. (They've got a mouthful of a last name, but I guess I'm in no position to talk.) If you find out anything more about her "famous pirate" mom, let me know, I actually don't know much about Sigrid and Momoe's daughter. Dad and Papa might know something, come to think of it; we should visit them when you get back, it's been far too long.

I also have to admit, I did laugh a bit at how you described Eine, and some of the questions you asked. I was always paying a bit more attention to my tabulations than I was to the others' wounds, but even so, I can confirm that it's really easy to get freaked out when your comrades get hurt. Eine, though, that poor kid, I can't imagine being a medic at that young an age. That really can't help the inherent anxiety of being a field medic. I hope his parents aren't worrying too much. If he ever seems like he's getting too stressed out, let him know that he can ask me for advice, alright? Medic-to-medic and all that. (You can leave out the parts about how I kept a running bill for everything I did.)

Write back soon, okay? Oh, and maybe write a letter to Gun Mom, too. Both of your moms know you've got a natural talent for exploring, but I think Gun Mom's been getting worried about you—you know how she is. She'd definitely appreciate hearing from you personally.

Be safe, and good luck. We're all rooting for you.

Money Mama
Something wrong? You've been reading that letter for a while.
Oh. Do you need to sleep soon? I can go to my room.
Nah, nah, don't worry about that. There's no bad news from home or anything like that, right?
No. There's good news, actually.
Well, that's... Saying "good" would be redundant, huh.
Mhm. And also mhm to what you were going to say.
...I want to be there for the good news.
Are you feeling homesick?
Oh, that's the word for it.
I'm homesick.
Can't say I'm surprised. You did say you didn't get out much until, well, you left for Tharsis.
Are you homesick, Shelly?
...Huh. Am I homesick? That's a good question...
It is?
So, well, this is gonna sound...no other word for it, stupid, but while I get what homesickness is, I don't get what it feels like.
You're right. That is stupid. I don't know how that would work. You know what homesickness is, but you don't know what homesickness is.
Listen, I've never said I'm a good emotions understander—there's gotta be a better word for that, that sounded weird. I'm just a pretty okay former sky pirate.
You were a good former sky pirate.
What is with my mouth tonight, it keeps opening itself before my brain's actually thought anything!
Drink water. Here.
Oh, you don't mind me drinking from— Never mind.

Hahhhhh... Okay, thanks, I can feel the lump in my head and the hole in my face starting to sync up again.
Maybe "sky pirate" is wrong. Does "captain" sound better? You're good at that, even when you're not a pirate.
Eh, I guess, when it comes to my ship. I'm not the captain of the guild, though, that's your job.
Captain Harper.
Sounds nice, huh? Heh, want me to start calling you "Cap'n"?
Thank you. No.
Cap'n does sound nice. But I'm Harper, no other name.
Other than Harper Lupita Hannighan-Mathers.
Hey, two names is plenty for a lot of people.
You have three.
Used to have three. "Heedless Blaze" just... It doesn't feel right after the...
It doesn't feel right. That's okay. No need for bad memories. Sorry.
Hey, no need to be sorry. Before we get caught in a "sorry-no-need-to-be-sorry" loop, what was that news from home you were talking about.
Oh! Money Mama was telling me that Uncle Ranger is starting a restaurant...

Hey, Xiaohu, got a—
(Damn. Falling asleep at your desk can't be comfy.)
(Actually, sorta surprised that she's asleep at all. I don't think I've ever seen her tired before.)
(Man, if she sleeps like that, she's going to feel all sorts of sore tomorrow. Maybe I could—)
(No, idiot, that's dumb. Don't carry someone when they didn't ask you to, that's rude.)
(That's even dumber. We're guildmates, you take injuries on her behalf on a regular basis, suddenly making sure her body's not annoyed with her tomorrow is out of line?)
(There's a difference between doing your job and—)
(Too late, I already picked her up.)
(She is out cold. At least I didn't wake her.)
(Alright, well, let's get her to bed. No sense in putting her back where I found her.)

(There. Hope that saves her from some back pain, or neck pain, or whatever.)
(...And on that note, practice what you preach, you're going to end up sleeping on her floor if you don't get to your own bed soon.)

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