After a few days, you land in the 7th Hierarchical City: Kazamotsu.The airship docks at the port. The town has a serene environment about it.Makoto, Noel, and Tager wait beside the door. It opens up, letting down the built-in staircase. You patiently allow them to get off.>"Nice town.">"What's next?">"Where to now?">"Why'd we make port here instead of Yabiko?">[write-in]
>>1759839>"Nice town.">"What's next?"
"Nice town," you comment. "What's next?""Wow, this place is so pretty!" Noel adds in agreement. "And there are so many delicious-looking shops. Is this the 6th Hierarchical City Yabiko?""No; this is-" Tager starts just to get interrupted."This is the 7th Hierarchical City Kazamotsu," Makoto responds. "Well known for their rich cheese and thick-sliced bacon pizza! They're really good!""Yeah?" Noel asks. "Let's go get some later, Makoto!""This isn't a sightseeing expedition," Tager chimes in, bursting their bubble."Awwww!" Makoto and Noel reply."Maybe just one or two places?" Makoto requests."Makoto... Tager's right," Noel argues. "We're not here to play around.""Noellers..." Makoto asks desperately."Let's just settle for going to that pizza joint over there," Noel comments expectantly."Wait a minute!" Tager interrupts."Whoa; Tager's on the ball, isn't he?" Makoto asks."Wow..." Noel adds in awe."C'mon, you two..." Tager mutters."But... but Tager, look at the time," Makoto argues."And we still have a while before we leave for Yabiko," she pleads. "C'mon, it's okay, right?"Yeah, the sun's about to set," Noel points out. "I wonder what time the city's interconnecting ropeways stop running.""The ropeways here stop running once the sun goes down, since there's a place with a high concentration of seithr in the middle," Tager explains."Well, that means we're spending the night here!" Makoto contests."Yaaay!" Noel cheers."Officer Noel, I will be your guide!" Makoto adds."I leave it to you, Officer Makoto Nanaya!""Being a commanding officer... is different than I expected," Tager mentions."By the way, Tager... why didn't we go straight to Yabiko?" Noel asks."Oh, that," Tager answers. "The 6th Hierarchical City of Yabiko has the most heavily guarded port of all the hierarchical cities. They would shoot down a Sector Seven ars magus vessel without any questions.""Oh," Noel says, listening intently."However, the 7th Hierarchical City of Kazamotsu is a tourist city," Tager goes on. "Even our ship can make port here without issue. Plus, it's relatively safe here. The two of you are wearing Library uniforms, but even then, we shouldn't have too many problems getting around."As if that just jinxed it, you catch sight of some soldiers in abnormal uniforms in the crowd.>"Let's find a hotel.">"We've got company.">[write-in]
>>1760342>>"We've got company."
"We've got company," you point out, directing the group's attention toward the NOL troops."Indeed, we're surrounded," Tager comments. "Looks like sightseeing time is over, you two.""Aw; come on!" Makoto shouts, exasperated."Out of the crowd, there are 14... no... 16 of them," Noel observes.Amid the crowd of tourists, one man approaches."Lieutenant Noel Vermillion. Lieutenant Makoto Nanaya. Captain Hazama. And the Red Devil of Sector Seven. You will be apprehended. Resistance is useless. Come with us quietly.">"Like hell!">[prepare for combat]>"Are you Kagura's entourage, by any chance?">[write-in]
>>1760555>>"Are you Kagura's entourage, by any chance?">[prepare for combat]
"Are you Colonel Mutsuki's entourage, by any chance?" you ask."You have the right to remain silent," the man blurts out. "Anything you say can and will—wait; wrong country.""Uh... What?" Makoto and Noel ask in confusion."If they're not going to give us any information about the Colonel or where we're going, we might as well resist and see how we fare on our own," you attempt to whisper."I can hear you, you know," the NOL soldier comments.>"Damn.">"Has anyone ever told you what excellent hearing you have?">"I surrender.">"Screw it; civilians, step aside!" [start a fight]>[write-in]
>>1760609>>"Screw it; civilians, step aside!" [start a fight]
"Screw it," you exclaim, summoning Danger Noodle and Friendly Pasta. "Civilians, step aside!""That's a Causality Weapon," the soldier shouts, astonished. "That is a Causality Weapon! Why does a Captain have one of them?!"The other soldiers close in on your position.Noel jumps back, summoning Bolverk. Makoto preps some combative ars. Tager drops into a fighting stance.>"This doesn't need to come to blows.">"You'd best hope Kagura backs you up quickly.">[use Serpent's Benediction]>[stab the coppers with your Danger Noodle]>[write-in]
>>1760665>>[use Serpent's Benediction]
"Serpent's Benediction," you enunciate. "Do yourselves a favor and back off."Some of the troops get the message.Others open fire."Ack!" Noel and Makoto shout, dodging the soldiers' barrage of attacks.You constrict a few of them with your Friendly Pasta in the meanwhile.>"Give up yet?">"Better hope Kagura gets here quickly.">[use Bloody Fangs]>[use Devouring Fang]>[use Falling Fang]>[use Hungry Coils]>[use Rising Fang]>[use Serpent's Redemption]>[use Vengeful Viper]>[use Venom Sword]>[write-in]
>>1760742>>"Better hope Kagura gets here quickly.">[use Serpent's Redemption]
"Better hope Kagura gets here quickly," you add.You use the Serpent's Redemption technique, leaping back and forth so as to avoid the assailants' attacks."Hyah!" you scream, using Serpent's Infernal Rapture.In a matter of minutes, the soldiers are over and done with.The more foolish ones finally start tending to their wounds.You head away from the field of battle as the soldiers retreat."Now that that's over with, let's go find a hotel," Makoto recommends insistently."Are you sure we were supposed to do that?" Tager asks.>"Beats me.">"It seemed like a good idea at the time.">"I like Makoto's stream of consciousness better.">[write-in]
>>1760782>>"It seemed like a good idea at the time."
"It seemed like a good idea at the time," you reply."Whatever; we might as well try to find lodgings of some kind now," Tager responds.After an hour or so, you check into a hotel down the road."I'm tired," Makoto mutters, stomping into her room and flopping into her bed with a weary sigh."I'm exhausted," Noel adds, doing the same.You hear heavy footsteps approach in the distance.>"G'night, everyone.">[write-in]
"G'night, everyone," you declare, marching off towards your room.That's when you bump into a sharp-dressed NOL officer wearing a black jacket and a pair of handwraps.Conversing with Tager, of all people.You'd throw a fit of frustration if it wasn't for your swift inferential skills."Do you really think I enjoyed following you all the way here?" he asks Tager. "I could be spending the night with some beautiful wo-"He catches sight of Makoto and Noel—as well as his tongue."But I did it anyways, because I have a responsibility to keep this plan of ours alive.""Apologies," Tager replies.You draw the conclusion that the man in black is none other than the Colonel."Don't worry about it," Kagura responds. "Keeping the four of you in a cell probably wasn't the best idea of all time, anyways. All I'm saying is I just wanted you to know I'd do the same.">"Nice to meet you.">"It's a pleasure. Truly.">"Colonel Kagura Mutsuki, I presume?">[write-in]
>>1760973>>"Colonel Kagura Mutsuki, I presume?"
"Colonel Kagura Mutsuki, I presume?" you ask."You know it," he answers."Hey, Makoto," he continues, waving at her.She turns right side up in her bed and faces him."Sorry for the welcoming party I sent, but I had to make your arrests look convincing—or at least try.""Well, we got through it," she replies, "even if it wasn't per that convoluted—dare I say insane—plan of yours.""Well, we've got Kokonoe back at our headquarters," he responds. "She and I are going to lay it all out for you tomorrow. Hopefully it won't be as insane as you'd expect.""G'night, then," you mutter, pacing off to your room.You pass out in a matter of minutes."Great job showing those clowns who's boss," a voice resounds in your head. "I couldn't be prouder.">"Shut it.">[ignore voice]>"Oh, great; you again.">[write-in]
>>1762595>>"Oh, great; you again."
"Oh, great; you again," you complain."Better show some respect for your elders, kid," Terumi nags."Yeah; sure," you respond, "I'll get right on that.""Sounds like someone could use some manners!" he shouts, kicking you across the face.You don't get any visual sensations. The scene remains jet black.Any trace there was of Terumi vanishes in what feels like an instant.You wake up to a radiant dawn, with the sheets to your bed scattered across your room and sunlight flowing vibrantly through the window.>[get breakfast]>[take a shower]>[check the time]>[check in on your allies]>[write-in]
>>1766275>>[take a shower]
You head for the bathroom and leave your clothes on the floor.After a few minutes, you're finished showering.You throw your suit back on and head out the door.Kagura paces around in the hallway. Makoto and Noel are busy having breakfast. Tager is nowhere to be seen.>[get breakfast]>"Good morning.">"Where's Tager?">[write-in]
>>1770256>>>[get breakfast]>>"Good morning."
"Good morning," you greet them."Good morning, Ryouma," Makoto responds.Noel waves, downing a cup of yogurt."I had to spend the night here 'cause the city's transportation system was down for the night," Kagura explains. "Tager left first thing in the morning—presumably to meet up with Kokonoe for upgrades."You head downstairs and get breakfast.