Due to my error. This is my responsibility—

Have you made any progress on intel?

We've intercepted their communications. It appears the other team has a radar set up to detect the weapon.

Then you know what you have to do.


Of course, defeating Dragons is important. But that's not SECT11's only mission. I expect to hear from you soon.


So what he's saying is that our nation didn't send us as heroes, or even soldiers, to fight dragons... just as thieves. Thugs.

Will: Shouji, how about it? We're here to follow you. You survived the last war—that's why SECT11 is under your command.

However, exterminating Dragons is priority one. If we read an Imperial, we head out!

Okay, Sho! Whatever you decide, that's what we go with.



People called him 'And Richter'. You know, 'Ladies, and Richter'. You've gathered by now. But he liked that little joke, said that he liked being included.

For a long time, I don't think I fully understood what it was that Richter was so worried about losing. There was something deep inside of him that yearned for a place, yearned to be known and defined—a yearning for 'purpose'. The conflict between what you love, and how what you love is used... It's something I'm not wholly familiar with, myself. But, to Richter, Murakumo was where he belonged, where he could feel satisfied—where he, in a way, truly existed.

In the battle against the second Imperial, I saw for myself just how desperate Richter was to protect the place he belonged. No, 'desperate' isn't the right word. The truth is, no matter how little he thought of himself at times, Richter Esslinger possessed an incredible determination. He had grown an enormous amount since the beginning of our battle, and until the very end, he would only continue to grow—to become someone who could be truly relied on, a pillar of our group deserving of that 'and'.

He truly is a good man. I'm lucky to know him.

Part 61: Self Esteem Fund

On that day, it was time for our usual rounds—taking care of errands and overseeing construction, then heading to HQ for the update on the search for the ATL Code.

Hopefully we find this weapon soon. The longer we sit around looking for it, the more time Fomalhaut has to prepare his next attack.

Yeah, she's being kinda stubborn about it, huh?

Mornin', Taichi. Shichiro.

Taichi: Are you guys sure you don't want our help looking for this 'code'? I'm pretty good at finding things.

Shichiro: That is most certainly true, but I believe we would be in a poor position were we to come afoul of those SECT11 characters.

Unfortunately, I'd have to agree.

I actually took a look at Himuro's notes yesterday. I don't think he'd say it out loud, but you guys seem like you've been improving.

So I've been meaning to ask. Which one of you is supposed to take hits?

Shichiro: Eh? Is it not ideal to avoid damage?

Well, sure, but you're not gonna be able to do that all the time. If we could I'd be out of a job.

Taichi: No way! You'd still have those guns of yours.

Right. It seems like Nishitani thinks she's the one who should be doing that, but she really shouldn't be. But you spend a lot of time in the air, and Togetsu's a YUUHI operative.

Shichiro: I've been practicing with firearms lately for cover support, but your point is valid.

None of you guys are really, like, built. If Asumu used those tricks she tries on someone else, maybe she might get somewhere, but it seems like she's got the same kind of constitution as Koron.

You're right, she should take a page out of my book and let other people get hit.

Taichi: Still. You're right, but I don't really know what we'd do to fix that. You guys have Youka, but I'm about the buffest person around in Unit 10.


Taichi: Oh, but I'm not holding you guys up, am I? Emille'll probably complain about it if I make you much later, right?

Right. I'll see if I think of something.

Oh hi, yo, hero-tachi! Another gokigenki day, ne?

Sharon was holding a few requests behind her back.

Holding those behind your back for after we talk to Shizuka?

Hai, hai!

Yes, well, we've finished the second residential ward!


We've gotten everyone we have moved in there, and Miss Asami wanted to say thank you, when you have a moment?

Ah, so she's taken up floor head duties?

Yes, she seemed rather adamant that she should.

Alriiiight! Let's working, hero-tachi?

Let's working, Sharon.

This one's gonna be no fun at all. You heard me? You want it anyway? Thrilled to hear it! Then, ikimashou! Everyminna in the Diet wants to yatter atcha, hero-tachi. Sounds like they've got questions about Murakumo jikens? So you gotta talk to them if you wanna.

Oh, this sounds awful.


It's okay, I got this one.

Are you like, being an involuntary voluntary witness? It's tough being yousha...

Lotsa baggage left at Tokyo City Hall, yo! Ample stock of food'n'stuffs, I betsu!

Ah, I see. This shouldn't be too much trouble.

I am going to tell you now that we will not be finishing this quest this update, and you shouldn't try. This is another miniboss quest, but the miniboss in this quest is far more out of our league than the Hammerer was.

Strictly speaking, Kinu couldn't have upgraded Arms Fabrication immediately anyway, but see my first contribution to "writing dialogue" for characters in Sympathy above.

Power is megagiga hitsuyou, y'know? We're ganbatting like gangbusters to save power, but still shorting out. Won't ittekitteing a few generators over help?

This should be no issue. I believe I know who made this request. We'll be able to take care of this one lickety-split.

Even if it's not all today, arigato gozaimuchly, hero-tachi! Miss Sharon loves you!

It's no big deal! What's going on?

Loitering Tech: I've been working on salvaging any and all broken generators we can get, so, um... do you guys mind making a trip to the Underground? Scavenge three generators, at least? I think I know the locations, so I can mark them on your map, Mr. Esslinger.

Of course. Give us a bit of time to handle the prep work for our other duties this morning and we'll get it ready for you.

We headed over to the MP Lodgings. My stomach lurched a few times.

MP Fujita: What a pickle... I'd hoped not to entangle you in this mess.

Sadly, I'm unsure they'd be satisfied with anyone else at this juncture.

I'm the face of Murakumo at this point, really.

MP Fujita: The truth is, there've been objections from MPs to increasing the Murakumo budget. Bluntly, they're demanding a Q&A session so they can determine the appropriate budget for the organization. Sorry, but could you please come to the Main Chambers with me?

Mio stood at the front podium, but the rest of us took our seats.

Hi hi! I'm Mio Akaneno, with Murakumo Unit 13. My colleagues and I will be handling your questions.

MP Ukai: Very well. Let us proceed. You all have been granted a private room in the Murakumo dormitories, yes?

MP Ukai: Furthermore, your food allocation consists of two high-energy rations totalling over 4000 calories. Whatever specific duties you may have aside, members of the public and of the Diet have expressed strong opinions about this excess.

MP Ukai: Today, before the Diet, the people demand you explain your right to such luxuries!


Okay, first off, you know... you know we don't ask for those bentos and stuff, right? People just give them to us. It's not like we can do anything about that food after it's made. Not eating it would be a waste of food. And, like—

If I may?

Go ahead.

Koron Nagataka, Unit 13. You know why that is, yes? Several members of this unit, myself included, have physical conditions that burn through energy faster than the average human. If you expect us to do our job, concessions need to be made in order for us to do that job. Which, mind you, is fighting to save humanity.

Speaker Katsura: That's enough. Next question, please.

Peacenik MP: We currently face, for the second time in as many years, an attack by Dragons. Does this not prove beyond any doubt that attempting to resolve the issue through force of arms has resolved nothing at all?


With all due respect, are you serious?

Peacenik MP: Of course! With all sentient beings, heart-to-heart communication must be possible! Why, if I'm not mistaken, isn't your unit itself led by a Dragon?

I sighed.

Chisa Inomiko, Unit 13. Hello. Yes, I am a Dragon, that's correct. I can absolutely assure you that such a thing is impossible.

Peacenik MP: But how could that be, if you yourself are so open to communication?

Even being born as a human, my existence in human society has required concessions and specific aids. Moreover, the people we would need to speak to in order to cause that to happen would never be amenable to that. These are not aliens with a similar society to humans—races before you have tried, and those races are extinct, ma'am. So long as Dragons exist in the manner they currently do, no such dialogue is possible.

Peacenik MP: But... but I—

Speaker Katsura: That's enough. Next question, please.

Stubborn MP: Let us set these aside for the moment and focus on the subject of your collusion with our enemy of the past war, the Dragoness Mizuchi. Your Unit 13 was especially favored by President Hikasa—why, you, Miss Akaneno, have professed to being essentially family.

MP Fujita: Hold on, that's—

Did you just actually say that to my face?

Richter Esslinger, Unit 13. Sir, are you actually accusing us of collusion? You believe that we knowingly abetted the Dragoness's massacre of Tokyo citizens and the destruction of the United States? Moreover, you are aware that many of the crimes you listed were committed by said Dragoness, who is no longer the president of Murakumo, yes?

I myself was a victim of that very 'child abuse' you mentioned, sir. I was subject to human experimentation at Okitama Hospital some years before the Dragons appeared.

Stubborn MP: That may be the case, but I can't help but also notice that not only does your captain and PR rep have a direct connection to Hikasa's misdeeds, but that one of your members has curious ties to not only illegal, yakuza-run activities in the Yotsuya neighborhood, but indeed the murder of Councilman Ryuji Kozakura, a politician in similar spheres to Ms. Hikasa. Do you deny that this murder was a power play by Hikasa to take over the military development of—

MP Ariake: You! What are you doing?!

MP Ariake: This is nothing more than a show trial! I move that this testimony be suspended!

Heckling MP: The questioning will continue!

Loud MP: Tyranny by the Inuzuka party!

Speaker Katsura: Order! ORDER!

That's a new one. They think Hikasa had Kozakura assassinated?


MP Fujita: Please excuse me. Here's an apology for that unpleasantness.

MP Ariake: The gulf between citizen and legacy MPs is a wide one, and the Diet is becoming more and more polarized. People are claiming the Murakumo organization is itself a political tool. We've managed to avoid being dragged in for now, but the issue will return.

MP Ariake: Please, don't pay their words any mind. Carry out your duties. We, at least, believe in you, Unit 13.

...How could they be so myopic?

Thank you, you two. I'm glad we've at least got guys like you on our side.

The depressing part is that I could absolutely see any legislative body on Earth pulling this shit were a Dragon apocalypse to actually occur.

Let's get done with all that unpleasantness with a stroll around Res B.


Crafty Woman: I call this one a 'Status Med Set'. Pretty handy to have around at a time like this, huh? 300.

We'll take it!

It's six Ozonols and three Somanels. Thanks.

Crafty Woman: Pleasure doing business with you! And remember, no returns or exchanges.

Oh, it's you. The club owner.

MANIC Manager: Like, yass, totes! Hey, this here's an SP Up 100, ain't that sweet? 100 for 100, c'mon, whaddya say?


MANIC Manager: Boom! I knew you had a good eye! Alright, here's the goods! High five, seeya next week!

You'll never guess what this one is.

True, true. Good of you to leave out the 1%, though.

Scientific Youth: If I didn't, it'd seem like I wasn't leaving enough margin for error.

Ace Reporter: ...Well, I mean, there's only one page, but.

No, you're about right.

That one's easy. You could tell that just looking at Emille.

Aged Gentleman: Unit 13, I've heard stories about you. I'm sure the people you rescued were delighted to be rescued by you in person.

Which one?

I'll shake your hand, ma'am. And thank you for the scarves you knitted. They're very nice.

Fervent Fangirl: EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE omigod omigod I touched him he touched me Richter Esslinger REMEMBERS me I'm never washing this hand again aaaaa

You're the guy who requested food, right?

Man of Dignity: Ah, yes, to be certain, I am, and yet I didn't expect you yourselves to see my request. Was there a mistake?

You'd be amazed how many times we've gotten that exact response.

Man of Dignity: Well, our food supplies are fast dwindling, and I don't expect an official response, but—

Tokyo City Hall's got some, we know! No worries.

Man of Dignity: I do hate to put you to the trouble, but we need to secure all the supplies we can.

Like I mentioned. Later. We will be going back to City Hall... later.

Yo. I should've expected to see you here too.

Sachi: Oh, Koron. Hi.

We're just making the rounds. Nothing major at the moment, thankfully.

Sachi: Good. ...Thanks for saving City Hall. A lot of... stuff happened there. I wouldn't wanna lose it.

Shiba: If you think about it, we're moving up. It's kinda sweet to live here, right?

Asami: Oh, hey, you guys! Thanks for fixing up this floor! This's really helping make our lives as refugees wonderful.

Glad to hear it. It's been pretty busy on our end, but we've tried our hardest.

Asami: Sachi and Shiba have been helping me out a lot, too. So I'm not gonna let some weird cult like the one from a year ago start up, trust me!

Well, good. That was a whole lot of trouble, you know.

wow, babe, that's a "Stealth II" level disguising of your feelings

I am not being tsundere. It was a pain in the ass!


Alright, I have the locations marked.

Here's one! Nice!

Found a second one!

And a-three! Let's head on back.


Loitering Tech: Yup, this is three, just like I asked. Thanks. Take this.

And an SP Up 100.

Loitering Tech: Everyone's been real patient with the brownouts, but honestly, keeping the lights off in the res ward isn't helping us make guns. So all us engineers, we've been thinking, what's been stopping us from re-rigging the power plant the Dragons busted up? That kinda thing's all I can do, but if it helps even a little to beat the Dragons, I'd be more than happy.

Huh. That's it?

I guess that's it.

Loitering Tech: What?

It's just usually when we do some quest that seems simple, something weird happens along the way. You have any long-lost daughters, dude?

Loitering Tech: Uh... no?

Alriiiight, let's get to work.


We were waylaid by a Diet Q&A session.

Ugh, those damned vultures. Beset by enemies on all sides, how is this organization meant to get anything done expediently? It's like those idiots want to be exterminated!

I know! It's out of line and self-defeating!

Not to downplay this issue, but may I begin the meeting?

Yes, do that.

A short while ago, we detected a major disturbance on the radar.

Oh, that's close! Nice. I haven't had a chance to check in on SKY since this whole thing started.

They're probably doing just fine, knowing them.

Having their help with searching for the Code would be fantastic.

Sorry to interrupt, but, President Emille—

What? Alright, put it on!

With hostilities between our two factions having been firmly established, David Griffith appeared to declare his intent.

A proposal. Up until now you've only gotten in our way! Care to offer an explanation?

Oh, has SECT11 done something to offend you? As you're well aware, they're a rowdy bunch. They've liberally interpreted their orders.

With all due respect, Mr. President, I believe the fault there lies on you for giving orders that could be so liberally interpreted.

Mr. Esslinger, yes? I assure you, I am offering my deepest apologies for that—you are correct.

Hmph. Enough blathering. You've sniffed out our anti-Dragon weapon, so what's done is done. Fine. Whatever. Make your proffer.

Deliver... our results over. Hah! You say it so nonchalantly. Am I a fool to you? Why would I blithely hand those over?

Ms. Emille, you know better than anyone. Who would you say can administer justice? Certainly, at one time, Japan expelled the Dragons, brought peace to our world—but in just a year, that transient peace collapsed.

Even if she did, it's not like you'd be able to use them. You've barely even been the President for a year, and if Emille had had this at the time, you guys would've used it. You're clueless.

Yes, I'll frankly admit that's the case. Thanks to your head start, Murakumo has the edge on us in Dragon data collection.


Join up with an outfit so under-prepared and half-cocked it couldn't even kill one Imperial Dragon by itself?

Yes, I'm aware of your Unit 13's prowess. You're unrivalled masters of combat with Dragons. But, to be honest, you don't seem especially sharp. Do you think you have the right to say no?

Oh, yes, sir. Absolutely. You haven't done a very good job of explaining what it is we would get out of your partnership.

Are we meant to be afraid of you simply because you're American? We won't simply roll over like dogs for you. We're the ones in a position of power here, Dave. You're not a very good negotiator.

Ordinarily, in the absence of our actual president, such a decision would fall to me. However, we do have an acting president at the moment—so, Emille?

...Let me make one thing clear, Dave. I don't give a damn for nations or borders.

I've examined every alternative, every option, for accomplishing that end. No matter how you sugarcoat your words or not, I won't accept your proposal. I ruled you out as a salient choice a long time ago.

As the captain of Unit 13, I don't care if your thugs continue to take out Dragons. That's less work for us. But you already became our enemies the moment your side shot first. Nobody in Murakumo would accept this proposal of yours, period.

I see that negotiations have broken down. In that case, we have no choice.

And that was the end of that conversation.

People who are convinced of their own superiority won't back down. He's just one more enemy we'll have to defeat.

He doesn't understand our struggle, and he won't try to.

...Tell me something. Is that how I've come across to you all, in the past?

Where is this coming from?

Just answer the damn question.

...No, I don't think so. Once everything was said and done at Tokyo Tower, I understood, at least. You're the sort of person who makes rash decisions thinking they're right, and you're stubborn, and you're rude, but you're a very honest person. David Griffith is a snake, a cheat, and a conman. You're better than he ever could be.

yeah you're oddly endearing even though you're kind of a huge jerk sometimes

I'm glad you're on our side, Emille.

I see.

Would that that were the only thing that happened that day. But, no... that day was far from over.

The emergency siren dyed the room red, loudly bursting its way into proceedings without a hint of respect.

What is it this time?

The date was September 12th. Two hundred and thirty-eight meters above the ground, the next battle had begun.


Outside, the SDF soldiers keeping their vigil again watched over the two children whose desire to play outside couldn't be quelled. The only thing that stopped them in their tracks—

—was the rainfall.

Little Rascal: Huh? Y-your... your skin is peeling...

Sgt. Makita: This rain—Inside! Quick! General Dojima, emergency message! We've got a situation in the Diet Plaza!

Sgt. Makita: Roger!


What's going on?!


Oh, shit.

That's not good!

We're going! Now!


Koron, help me deter it as best we can! I'll be using 119!

Got it!

The flesh on the man's leg was visibly melting from large holes in his clothes.

Pvt. Sasuga: We're heading out to save them right now! You're just going to get hurt if you go! Please, just try to wait until they're here!

Damn it! This is—


Kirino, it seemed, had chosen a very bad time to go for a stroll in the lobby.

Sir, wait! We need you!

But he wasn't able to run fast enough to catch up to Kirino before he took the elevator.

Fine! Let's go!

All six of us ran out into the rain.

We'll analyze it, so you all get out there and rescue as many civilians as you can find!

Shit! That hurts!

Get under me if you need to!

Just the few steps down the stairwell is enough for the damage proc from the acid rain—15% every few steps is not nice.

It's a persistent mega-poison, basically. Good thing there's no random encounters in front of the Diet Building!

Disfigured Woman: Hahahahahahahaha, i-it's not a good look, is it? The rain has my makeup smeared all over...! Ahahahaha, it hurts, god it hurts, I've got sensitive skin, I need to wash my skin fast—!

Get in there!


Oh god, oh god!

Richter and Koron were doing their best to protect us, but nothing could save us from how much this hellish squall hurt.

Pvt. Ogishi: Looks like there are survivors back there, but... how am I supposed to handle this?!

Calm Old Man: After all, I can't move anymore... Even if I make it back, my wife's gone... my kids... So please, leave me like this...

No, no, no! Come on! No! You can't say that! You can't—

Calm Old Man: You gotta... you... gotta...

Damn it, no, no, no!

This can't be happening! This can't be—

Chill Dude: My arms and legs are burned... bummer.

Lost Girl: Mommy... mommy... you went to get your umbrella... I fell asleep... but you didn't come back...

That's everyone! Move! Move!

The six of us rushed back inside, and at once, most of us let out a strangled, pained sound from our time in the rain. We weren't permanently injured, no—we were lucky for that. But that rain was a tool to inflict an incredible amount of suffering... and it was very good at its job.

Hah. Hah. Oh god.

Horrible... that's horrible...

...I'm gonna need to grab some new eyes.


...E-everyone... thank you for your rescue efforts.


We've got several people with melted gear and serious injuries, even in the SDF. What the hell is that stuff?

...It's acid.


It's like I said. Fomalhaut isn't interested in taking it slow. He wants us dead, and he wants us to suffer.

The acid rain appears to be spreading from the vicinity of the Mori Tower... It's... weakening the Diet's granite elements. If it keeps up like this, the whole thing will melt.

...A radius that also happens to include Shibuya, where the ATL Code is located.

It's a strike on the whole of central Tokyo, is it? He's trapping us with nowhere to go, in a shelter that will most certainly erode...

For the benefit of those who do not know the overall layout of Tokyo, the 23 special wards of Tokyo are 619 square kilometers in area. The centermost special ward of Tokyo is Chiyoda, which happens to be the ward where we are now. Minato, where the Roppongi district, and by extension the Roppongi Hills Mori Tower, are, is directly south of Chiyoda. A ten-kilometer radius from the Mori Tower, as a result, hits 20 of the 23 special wards to some extent, and covers a full half of the overall size of Tokyo's main metropolitan area—much of what's left is in the three untouched wards, Adachi, Edogawa, and Katsushika, which take up roughly 138 of the 305 square kilometers of the special wards not being hit by this acid rainfall.

As a side note, every single location we have visited in either game, with the sole exceptions of Kokubunji and Hachioji (both cities, not special wards, and further west in Tokyo,) is within that ten-kilometer radius.

One hell of an escalation from creating anomalies out of certain zones, huh.

P-please, hold on a minute!

I'm well aware of how grueling this will be! But a crucible like this is mandatory if we are to hope of defeating a True Dragon.


Bite your tongue! If you don't want to hear what I have to say, you're more than welcome to leave! I don't hear them complaining!

...Y-yes, ma'am.


With things as they are, we don't have a choice. We're under a harsh time constraint. Unfortunately, I don't see another option, myself. We need to at least try. With no recon, nothing to work with, we have nothing.

Alright. We're moving out, everyone!

We'll send you over in an APC. We're taking back Roppongi as fast as we can!




I'm intelligent, sir. We all are. But you are our leader! Without you, we won't be able to get through this crisis—without the ingenuity you possess! We need you!

...I need you.

...What can I even do at a time like this?


We're heading out to Roppongi! Let's go, everyone!

Wait, you're heading out? Richter—!


Next time, we begin the main dungeon of Chapter 2.

Very little in this game is as hard as Tiamat, but the upcoming dungeon is no joke. Hope you're all ready for this.

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