Part 88: No Enemy To Me

I'm reading three Dragons supplying energy within those four entrances to the left and right.

Until those've been taken out, we probably won't make much headway with the main Imperial.

We'll take the far left first.

Himuro: Roger.

Oh, man. Here we go.

Taichi: Oof, this is a lot of stairs. You gonna be okay over there, Mio?

Aww, you're concerned about me? That's sweet.

Taichi: Why wouldn't I be? I mean, it's only really a problem when you're going up, but I can worry—Oh! If we run into each other again, you want me to let you ride the Comet Spear up?

To ride the... uh, what?

Taichi: Y'know, detonate some of the explosives and have it launch you up. It's a really nice feature!

Are you offering to let Mio rocketjump with your spear?

Taichi: Yeah, basically.

I think I'll stick with walking. No offense.

Taichi: Oh, no worries. Just wanted to offer.

Shichiro: Likely a wise decision. Taichi-kun has quite the talent for gauging the distance of these things—it's a precise art I haven't yet the ability to match.

Since when are you a demolitions expert, Taichi?

Taichi: Since a few days ago, I guess.

Leftmost entrance, first floor down's a bust. Ends in a balcony with—


And some Dragons, which we'll be exterminating.

Very nice!

Get me up. Ow.

ahh, i love accumulating goods.

Alright, moving downwards.

It seems this is the deepest entrance in this entrance. Moving on.

You've found one of the supply Dragon nests! It seems like the smaller Dragons here are a subterranean species—be careful!

Ah, yes, there it goes.

...Ah, well... how are we meant to clear this wall, then?

There's a wall over here, as well, it seems.

...Ah. It's come out.

I'm... pretty sure these guys come in and out on a timer cycle. Unlike the diggers in the desert, you can't lure them out with randoms.

Then let's get 'em!

You might be shocked to find that Icemole Dragons are like Mole Dragons, but ice. Their numbers are overall better—Hopping Ball can inflict Freeze, Evasive Maneuvers is +65% evasion now, and Surprise Smash's Blind is a 99% chance and cuts accuracy in half, but their HP total is a low 2558 and they've gained a weakness to Fire.

now let's see here. what doth mine eyes see


...why... why did I use Icicle Eden here? Did I mis-input this?


Quick little bugger, huh?

Oh, yeah. Ikebukuro was lousy with them.

Ugh, shit!

Wow, this dragon knows what it's going.

Perhaps the appreciation for similarly evasive foes can come after we've defeated it?

Nonononono, you're supposed to get hit! Get back here!

You don't get to hit me! Bad dog!

Hah! Not so slippery now, are you?!


Bye-bye, Invader!

Wait, Ikebukuro was? Were they all, like, on the platforms, or...?

No, they were on the tracks. I'm not sure how they did that either.


i love opening boxes.

You also enjoy hiding in boxes.

i do. my body heat warms the space more effectively in small spaces. it gets all nice and cozy.

Oh, this little bugger's back in town.

We ought to get the jump on it.

This guy here's actually far enough out from his door that you can just, like, get a pre-emptive.

Hey, there's some Dragons behind the wall that might be coming in. You guys wanna set up?

Can do!

One's rearing up to jump in!

I miss how easy this was last year.

Gonna have to try harder than that!



It's alright. We've got this.

Leave us alone for a bit!


Hey, lay off, would you?


Mama please look out

Thanks for the assist, Sumie!

i have the coolest maternal figure.


Excellent work. Now don't die.

You got it!



The other one's rearing to enter the battle now that the wall's down!

How about we wait for it, then?

Ah, keep our momentum rolling? A solid plan.

C'mon, you can do better than that.

Ready to go for a hat trick?

Almost got it!

Oh, wait, shit. Can someone help me?


Hey, I'm the one with the shield here, assholes!

Well, at least that one's dead.


Oh my god it actually worked. We have to tell Masaki his thing actually worked.


Get up.

You got it!

There you are, ladies. Now, shall we go for the finale?

You're fighting uphill, bucko. Might be better to just run away.

Please. We need those materials.

Woohoooooo! We're awesome!

That we are.

That's greatly cleared out this area. Excellent work, everyone!

I don't mean to make you guys feel inadequate or anything, but Unit 13 just took out three dragons at once.

Asumu: What?! Of course that's going to make me feel inadequate!

Shichiro: Now, now, Asumu-san. Kazuki-senpai and Nagataka-senpai are on the front lines, yes? Surely that's simply the force of united lovers.

Sorry, what? Sumie and I worked together just fine before we were lovers, thanks. It has nothing to do with anything that sappy.

Shichiro: Oh, my apologies, Nagataka-senpai. From how Taichi-kun describes his older sister's relationship—

Taichi: Oh no no no no no, don't put the blame for this one on me. This is all him. You gotta believe me, guys.

Shichiro: Speaking of, Taichi-kun—


What was that about? Haishima-san again?


Who's Haishima?


Nobody! Nobody.

Hm. Do we know a Haishima? The name doesn't sound all that familiar.

Not that I remember.

!!!! North. Heef. Heef.

Hhhhenghehehegehehenghehennngheh loot.

'Haishima'. No, I don't think I know a Haishima. Do you, Mio?

Yeah, not off the top of my head. It's not really a big deal though, is it?

...It might not be.

Young Nerd: I adore ruins and geology. I'd prefer to die pursuing my passion—

You can do that once the dragons are cleared out. It's probably not going anywhere any time soon. Now come on.

Young Nerd: You're saying it's not optional?!

That's the end of this path. It's probably best you turn around now.

Taichi: O-okay! Anyway, how's it going over there?

Who's—you're not going to answer me. Uh, it's going well. I think we're closing in on the first supply Dragon.

Taichi: Cool! Cool cool. We, uh, we just took out... one! Dragon. A normal one. Just a normal one. One of the ones with the, uh, the hard heads.

Asumu: They're called 'Hammerers', Inomiko.

Oh! Great job. Those are pretty tough. I'm proud of you!

Taichi: Eheheheheh. I try. We. We try.

Asumu: You think I want to be part of you and your family bonding? You can say 'I'. I won't get mad.

Taichi: Well, I mean, I don't wanna sound like an egotist or anything. You guys are doing great!

Asumu: You worry about sounding like an egotist?

Taichi: I just think it's important not to get too big for my britches. I'm really excited, you know? Might be easy to let it get to my head.

You're doing fine, Taichi. You three have improved a lot since you started. I mean, a lot.

Yeah, they can fight without falling on their butts now.

Shichiro: Kuh!! Miroku-kun's harsh words cut like knives...

Oh one sec there's one of those bunguses now


Taichi: Already?!

I can punch pretty hard.

Okay, so just the one more before we get there.

[Too easy! Pathetic! Predictabo!]

That must be it. We—

Oh, sorry, one moment. We're getting a transmission.

A garbled mess of sound and fury erupted from our microphones, through which a few words could be heard loud and clear.




Like... like, now?

Go. Now. We don't want to know what he might do if left alone.


Masaki: Yes!! You've arrived!! Show me those beautiful faces, Unit 13, no frowns!

Masaki had slowly grown less and less kempt over the course of this, and I was beginning to wonder if he'd even slept a single time since the start of the conflict.

Are you... okay?

Masaki: Am I okay? Am I okay?! AM I OKAY?! I'm more okay than I've ever been in my life! I can touch color and see time! SKILLS! SKILLS!! SKILLS!!!

You know that... like, not sleeping leads to people dying, right?

Masaki: First of all!!! Miss Nagataka!!!

That's... me, yes.

Masaki: Your progress as this conflict has gone on has been astonishing, and I daresay you're close to surpassing your previous level of ability! ...But poor Nagamimi's looking a little worn-down, so I went ahead and bugged Kirino about some of that nonsense he weaved into the romance pants. I present you with the strongest clothes your little friend will ever need!

Oh, thank you. It's true, she has been having a rough time. If I ask, she tells me, 'Piss off and focus on yourself', but she needs to learn to be taken care of herself.

Silly rabbit.

'I'm not a rabbit! How many times do I have to tell you, dumbass? I'm Nagamimi!'

You also tell me that I'm not a cat.

'Well, you're not! You're a Lucier. They're two different things! You can think whatever floats your boat, but I'm not a damn rabbit!'

sure, sure. silly nagamimi.

'And I'm not silly, either! I can take care of myself, idiot. I barely need this lunatic to begin with. Ugh. But I guess I'll take the clothes if you insist. And shouldn't you hurry up and start doing that fancy two-element crap you were working on?'

That's a solid idea.

'Yeah, I'm full of them. Smarter than you are, anyway. ...And what are you assholes looking at?'

Oh, you're just... unusually conversational today.

'I'm plenty conversational, you just don't listen. And what the hell's with you? When are you gonna start doing all that instant iai multi-cut crap you started tearing things up with last year?'

You... you mean Mate in 16?

'No shit, moron. The whirlwind, and haven't you been working on that stabbing move, too? Hurry up and get going on that! The dragons aren't dying any faster out here!'

Oh, uh—o-okay.

'And you, with the megaphone! You know how your powers work better than Masaki does now, so why don't you start using it better? With more of those speakers and crap. Hurry it up!'

Sorry, rude??

But... yeah, I guess I could. I guess I am kinda ready for that, huh?

'This lunatic's got some doodads for Richter to get that last TROY working, and the legal team managed to convince that hippie MP not to sue if Youka headbutted something, so you're good there. And Sumie—he got the burst-fire mods working, so take those out of the box next to him.'


Ah, yes, this should give me my full range of capabilities at last.

Looks like we're all at peak efficiency. Nice.

'Half of it was mental, anyway. Human bodies aren't used to having skills develop at rates like this, so a bunch of you just weren't able to consciously process that muscle memory in an actual fight yet. I guess it's not your fault you need me to tell you to do it, and you three needed this guy to help you at least a bit.'

Is he okay?

'He passed out, duh. Saw I was doing his job and fell asleep right there. Maybe the idiot can actually do a bit of good work once he's slept, but you better go or else he might notice you're still here and wake up.'

Hey, you're coming with us, you know.

'Ugh, seriously? You STILL need my help? You're pathetic.'

What would we do without Unit 13's tactical advisor?

'You've got that look on your face like you're patronizing me, pretty boy. You wanna try that again, huh? Say that to my face?'

Then Masaki stabbed me.

Wait, wh—ow!

Oww ow ow ow


Masaki: ...zzz... to victory!! Murakumo Unit 13... zzz, honk, honk, zzzzhnk...


How'd it go?

Swimmingly. We're now operating just past our peak capacity from the previous conflict, I would say.

Wow, dang.

it's a good thing i'm so fast

This one's... It's 'Bersersnatch'. It'd be much stronger if the Jabberwock weren't draining its power.

All the easier for us!

I am the one whose shape was snatched don't need a shape to get respect up in the snatch

The Snatches, plural, have the same statline and general gameplan but a unique addition to that gameplan for each. All three have heavy defenses that are slightly heavier on the magical side, 3834 HP, and a 20% resistance to Fire, Ice, Lightning, and Aerial. Thankfully, none of them are bow ties. ...though I wouldn't put that past this series honestly.

Watch out! It's attempting to gain a burst of adrenaline off of bloodletting!

Bersersnatch's unique trick is Blood React. Any time he manages to inflict Bleed, he'll get an extra turn.

Just try it!

It's readying up!

Unfortunately for it, I was ready before the fight started.

Simple self-buff. Anyway, hey, wanna see what Koron's gonna be doing for the rest of the game?

Sturdy, sturdy! But how long can you last?

Oh my god she actually did it.

Yes. I have the coolest girlfriend ever.

Frostburn is a dumb skill designed by idiots. It costs 4 MP, has an absurd damage modifier of 500-600% (this guy's very tanky magically), is neutral damage, and has a chance to inflict three separate statuses in Burn, Freeze, and Paralysis. The Paralysis starts at 25% action negation and ends at 50%. It's cost-effective, highly damaging, has three different statuses, and while it can't hit weaknesses, it's also resisted by exactly one enemy in the entire game. It is Koron's best move and will remain Koron's best move in about 95% of situations for the entire remainder of the game. It's just too much value on one skill and it costs 20% of what her best skill in the previous game cost.

You said it likes blood, yeah, Richter?

Essentially, yes.



Hey, I'm over here! Leave her alone!

Did anyone get the license plate of that truck

And uh, there's the Bleed. Giant Slalom is a move all three Snatches have, but Bersersnatch cares about the Bleed.

Go on, see how well this works out for you.

Thankfully, Bersersnatch uses one of its extra turn actions on Blood Frenzy, which just heals it.

Oh there's the plate okay got it

Ugh, shit.

Youka, you really gotta stand back when you're hurt.

Ah, there's nothing to worry about. I appear to have caused it some trouble.

Somehow, by striking it with her antipode skill, Koron had caused the Bersersnatch's muscles to begin seizing.

There you are, Sumie.

thanks bud

Ugh! You okay, Sumie?


Do us all a favor and get up.

So bossy!

Looks like he's slowing down a bit. Ready to give him hell?

So... how long can you keep doing that?

Hm? Oh, I feel fine. Refreshed, even, like I've been visited by a gentle spring breeze.

You okay?!

Expected that to work better, huh, asshole?

This time, Fiend Shifter worked.


Seal Cannon is their other general trick. It does less damage, but, uh, get this, inflicts Skill Seal.

Feeling a bit under the weather, are we?

Let me help with that!

Nice shootin', Tex!

You, too.

The two shared an enthusiastic high five as we worked on getting Youka up off of the floor.

You too, Youka.

Yeah, thanks, appreciated, don't let me ruin the moment.

I just wanted to show her bouncing her knife.

Two more supply units remaining. Keep up the good work, team!

To save ourselves the trip up the stairs, we headed back out to the front by Escape Kit.

Okay! Let's hit up the middle-left one now.

Huh. A dead end?

Middle-left, first floor's a bust.

Alright, noted. Thank you!



Oh, there's someone down here!

Scared Researcher: Oh, god, what's that behind me?!

A vampire!

Scared Researcher: Aaaaaaaaaaaahhhhh!

And a catgirl.

Scared Researcher: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhh!!

People've called me a ghost before.

Scared Researcher: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!

I'm a dragon.

Scared Researcher: Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!

And I'm rescuing this poor woman instead of bullying her further.

Scared Researcher: Aaaaaaaaaa—oh, wait, that's great!

Aww, you're no fun.

Didn't even give me the chance.

What were you going to say?

I was going to say 'someone smarter than you'.

Koron, that's only scary to you.

Oh, really?

I mean everyone's smarter than me in some ways but you don't see me cowering in fear of everyone around me.

Anymore. Most of the time.

Middle-left's just got the one Dragon in it. It's a bust for supply units.

That said, we're going to kill this Dragon and rescue the person behind it.

Hey, Koron, kill this guy.

Oh, I mean, if you insist.

So yeah, this guy dies in three turns because Koron blows off 2400 HP in that time (three Frostburns, one Fantasy Zone). Youka does the rest with counters, but, uh, yeah, so that's Frostburn.

Do I look lost?

Kodachi: Well, uh... I'm not sure what you look. On your way to an anime convention, maybe?

That's fair.

That's all down this one. Next time, more Snatch. Same Snatch time, same Snatch channel.

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