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/qst/ - Quests

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You hardly remember what you were doing.

Rachel appears in your mind's eye.

Your vision clears up and expands as you blink and open your eyes. You recognize your surroundings as Ishana, the 0th Rune City.

"Good day, Ryouma."

>"Hello, madam Rachel."
>"What am I doing here again?"
>"Nice to see you."
>"Don't tell me I'm going to have to deal with Terumi again."
>>"Hello, madam Rachel."
>"What am I doing here again?"
"Hello, madam Rachel," you reply. "What am I doing here again?"

"I brought you here to reconnoiter the Imperator's base of operations," Rachel answers.

"You may want to conceal yourself," she adds. "Your presence is similar to Hazama's, but not enough for the Imperator to mistake you for the same person."

You scurry behind the cover of a pillar.

Rachel vanishes in a cloud of shadows and rose petals.

"What do you want, Terumi?" the Imperator demands.

"Just wondering why that tool Yayoi got a promotion," the Captain replies.

"I failed to notice," the Imperator answers. "It's easy to overlook the changes in the Novus Orbis Librarium's rank-and-file."

"I trust the Sword of Izanami is complete," the Imperator adds.

"All prepped and ready for action," Hazama responds.

"Do not take your responsibility lightly," the Imperator cautions. "The success of our plan hinges on your ability to channel the seithr necessary to open the Nemesis Horizon."

"What are you, my mother?" Terumi replies. "Don't answer that."

"I trust Ishana is as ideal a site for your project as you claim," the Imperator declares.

"Yeah; yeah," Terumi responds. "It's the perfect place to wipe out that little resistance party Kokonoe's arranged."

They silently pace around for about a minute.

>[wake up]
>[stay where you are]
>>[stay where you are]
You stay where you are.

"I will admit that your decision to use that repulsive giant was most ingenious," the Imperator resumes. "I never would have thought it bore such usefulness."

"Glad to impress," Terumi remarks.

The Imperator scans the room.

"We're not alone," she comments. "Show yourself."

>[wake up]
>[stay hidden]
>[reveal yourself]
>>[stay hidden]

>[wake up]

We do NOT wanna fuck with Izanami. She knows we're here.
You black out.

Your eyes snap open.

Rachel stands over you.

You sit up and lean forward against your hands.

Gazing around the room, you remember that Makoto, Noel, Tager, and you took refuge at Kagura's NOL branch in Yabiko.

"What did you witness?" Rachel inquires.

>"Something about a giant."
>"Something about the Sword of Izanami."
>"They were talking about how they were planning to wipe us out with a Cauldron."
>>"Something about the Sword of Izanami."
>"They were talking about how they were planning to wipe us out with a Cauldron."
"They were talking about using something called the Sword of Izanami," you answer. "Also, they're planning on using a Cauldron to wipe us all out. The Imperator said the success of their plan hinges on their ability to open something called the Nemesis Horizon."

"That information is hardly new," Rachel responds. "It simply means we must act more swiftly than I initially intended. There's a device called Kushinada's Lynchpin that will suppress the saturation of Ikaruga with seithr. We must activate it forthwith."

>"Where to now?"
>"They also mentioned something about a giant."
>>"They also mentioned something about a giant."
>"Where to now?"
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"They also mentioned something about a giant," you add.

"Then let's proceed with due haste," Rachel responds.

"Where to now?" you ask.

"Ragna is currently detained in a cell," Rachel answers. "Let us pay him a visit."

You follow her downstairs to the jailhouse, feeling sicker and sicker the closer you get.

"But Tsubaki needs-" Noel comments, abruptly interrupted by Kagura.

You notice Ragna, Kokonoe, and a lady dressed like a mage amid your rising feelings of nausea.

"I know," Kagura bellows. "Tsubaki needs Makoto's—and Noel's—love. But it won't do to have you split up. Understood?"

"But," Noel answers.

"I'm worried about her, too. Tsubaki and I go way back," Kagura reassures her. "I just need some time. Two days should be enough. Then I'll help you get to Tsubaki. Trust me. That's a promise."

"Okay, Kagura," Noel remarks. "I'll be waiting."

Kagura paces out, shooting you a concerned look.

"Ragna, I hope you're paying attention. There'll be a quiz later," Kokonoe banters.

"Shut up," Ragna responds.

"Ryouma, do yourself a favor and go back to your room," Kokonoe goes on.

"To the contrary," Rachel dissents. "He ought to be here to listen to what I have to say."

>"Who's the mage?"
>"Sorry; I'm feeling kind of sick today."
>"Who's the mage?"
>>"Who's the mage?"
"Who's the mage?" you ask.

"Her name's Celica," Kokonoe answers. "And she's kind of got a tendency to negate seithr. Her ability makes her prone to shutting down all sorts of seithr-based technology—including you."

"Is that why my right arm's stopped working?" Ragna asks.

"Anyways, it's best for you to keep your distance from her," Kokonoe resumes, ignoring him.

Celica backs up and leans against the wall in the room opposite to you.

"You kind of look like Terumi," she remarks.

Rachel faces Ragna and starts monologuing.

"I need to tell you about the book called 'The World.'
It has to do with the successor to the Azure, and with us, the 'Chrono Phantasma.'"

"Huh. Like Celica," Kokonoe interrupts.

"It is a story about a single 'book,' and a young girl," Rachel resumes. "That young girl was imprisoned. Yes, it was very much like this jail: dark, cold, and lonely. One day, she was given a book. In that book was written a tale. The story tells of a young girl in a country who is captured by a monster. A hero appears and defeats the monster. The end. All that was written was the 'Beginning' and the 'End.' All of the pages in between were blank. This didn't make for a story, so the young girl went on to write her own story in the book, relying on her own memory. The beginning had already been decided, so she wrote its continuation. The hero journeyed the country, ridding it of all its troubles... The story had spanned a hundred pages when the brave hero stood before the young maiden. Then... he defeated the monster."

"But this young girl... She didn't like this story," Rachel explains. "She started to patch it up and change it... but the ending was already pre-determined. It would always end the same way. The hero would stand before the young maiden... defeat the monster... then it would end. Silly, isn't it?"

Ragna faces her with dead silence.

"Huh?" Noel asks. "When the monster's defeated, wouldn't they live happily ever after?"

>"Not quite. The hero didn't rescue the girl, remember?"
>"I take it the girl with the book's whoever's using the Amaterasu Unit."

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