Lukas: First, we should make for the Southern Outpost.
Lukas: Desaix’s men hold it for now, but my fellows in the Deliverance have been fighting to reclaim it. The Deliverance hideout lies beyond the outpost. We’d best prepare ourselves for a long journey.
Brigand: Oy, travelers! ‘Fraid I’m gonna have to ask ya to stop right there. These here woods belong to me and my boys, see? So if ya wanna be passin’ through, yer gonna have to pay the toll. Ha ha!
Lukas: Well. That didn’t take long.
Alm: Brigands already? But it’s only been minutes—we’re still within sight of the gates!
Lukas: Worse surprises than this await us, Alm. Is everyone ready?
Alm: Yes. Come on, let’s clear this rabble out!
Alm: Follow me. I’ll clear us a path!
Lukas: Alm, if I may? You mustn’t rush headlong into battles on your own. Without experience, your friends will never grow into accomplished fighters. Trust them. Give them something to do. …At least let them deal the final blow.
Alm: Right. That’s good advice. I’ll give it a try!
(After the battle)
Alm: Yes! We won!
Lukas: That was some fine swordsmanship, Alm. I can see you have more than a bit of your grandfather in you.
Alm: You think so?
Lukas: Hm? Hold, everyone.
Alm: What is it, Lukas?
Alm: More brigands? It seems the rumors were no exaggeration.
Lukas: Based on their numbers, I surmise they must have a hideout nearby. But we can ill afford to pick fights with every cutpurse and rogue we encounter. Let’s sit back and lay low until they depart.
Brigand: Didja get a look at the wench we nabbed this morning? Hoo-ee!
Brigand: She’ll certainly add some color to that run-down old shrine! Gar har har!
Brigand: Gar har har! She’s prettier’n the boss, that’s for sure!
Alm: What? They’ve taken a prisoner?!
Lukas: Alm? Let’s just be calm and… Alm?! Alm, wait, don’t —
Alm: Hold it, you lecherous pigs!
Brigand: Huh? Who the hell are you?
Alm: Release the woman you’re holding at once, or else!
Brigand: Bwa ha ha! Or else WHAT?
Brigand: Ya must really want a knife in the belly if yer slingin’ taunts at the likes of us.
Lukas: So much for laying low… To arms, everyone!
Lukas: Look over there. They have an archer. He can strike from a distance, so we must plan our approach carefully. Whoever goes after him needs to finish him quickly or be ready for a reprisal. If you’re not strong enough to take an arrow or two, stay well away.
Lukas: *sigh* Well, I suppose that counts as our good deed for the day.
Alm: Sorry, Lukas. My legs were moving before I had a chance to even think.
Lukas: Valor is nothing to be sorry for. Now come. Let’s find this prisoner they spoke of. They mentioned a shrine, yes? It must be nearby.
Alm: What’s that shrine?
Gray: Oh yeah, guess you wouldn’t know since you’ve been stuck in the village. Shrines like this were built by folks so they had a place to worship Mila, but famine and other problems kinda put a damper on most Zofians’ piety. Now they’re mostly just home to brigands and the like.
Alm: Then the woman who was taken captive must be inside…
Brigand: Eek! Stay away from me! I’m only the stupid watchman! I just WATCH things! Eeeek!
(If you leave and come back)
Brigand: What? YOU again?! L-leave me alone! I told you, all I do is keep watch for the others!
Inside the Shrine
Alm: The dank smell of mold permeates the shrine. It’s foul, like the rogues who crawl about the place. How could this house to the Mother have become such a welcome haven for brigands?
End of the Shrine
Brigand Boss: Huh? What do you scrawny little rats want? You got nerve bargin’ in here just as I was gettin’ to the main event. Kill ’em, boys! …And be creative about it.
(If you retreat and come back)
Brigand Boss: Again? Don’t you rats learn? I’ll teach you to meddle in the affairs of others! Kill ’em, boys!
(Versus Brigand Boss)
Brigand Boss: Urgh. Who do you think you are? Saving one wench won’t make this world any less of a pit!
(Brigand Boss defeated)
Brigand Boss: Argh! Damn…you…
(After the battle)
Alm: Miss, are you all right? Say something!
Silque: Nnngh… Wh-who are you? How did I get here?
Alm: You’re in a shrine. Some brigands kidnapped you and took you here. Don’t worry, they’re gone. We dealt with them before they could do you any harm.
Silque: I see. Thank you, sir. After those ruffians seized me, I passed out… Ugh… I don’t want to think about it.
Alm: What’s your name?
Silque: I am Silque. I hail from a priory far to the east, on the island of Novis.
Gray: So, uh, Silque… What brings a woman of the cloth like you so far from home?
Silque: *gasp* My mission! I nearly forgot! I must find a man named Sir Mycen. Are we far from Ram Village?
Alm: Are you serious? Ram’s our home! Sir Mycen is my grandfather.
Silque: What? You’re Sir Mycen’s…grandson? ……! May I see that mark on your left hand?
Alm: What, this? Sure. Pretty strange for a birthmark, huh? And that’s not even the weirdest part. A long time ago, a girl in my village had the same mark on her hand.
Silque: So you’re the one sh—
Alm: Huh? What is it, Silque?
Silque: Sir Alm, I have something for you.
Silque: Here. Please take this.
Alm: All right, but…what is it?
Silque: It’s called Mila’s Turnwheel. It’s a relic that contains some of the Earth Mother’s power. I believe it will be of great use to you.
Alm: Are you sure? You were supposed to give this to my grandfather, right?
Silque: No. This is definitely for you. Now that you have left your village and embarked upon an auspicious journey, the Turnwheel will become a vital tool during the trials ahead.
Alm: Okay… Well, thank you. I promise to take good care of it. By the way, how do you use it?
Silque: You don’t use it. It uses you. When the time is right, the Turnwheel will give you a sign.
Alm: O…kay? I’m not sure I understand, but I’ll take your wor—
(The turnwheel starts glowing)
Silque: Ah! It appears that Mother Mila already wishes to show you something.
Alm: The Turnwheel… It’s glowing… What’s happening?!
(Vision of Zofia Castle)
Alm: Where am I…? That’s Zofia Castle! This is our kingdom? What happened here? Is the Deliverance too late?!
Silque: Sir Alm, what did you see?
Alm: It was… It was so clear! Silque, it was horrible!
Silque: Be calm. What you saw in the vision is not the present. The Mother is either telling you what could be…or what once was. Her power is sight.
Alm: So the vision is something that’s going to happen?
Silque: Something that COULD happen. If the vision was ill-boding, perhaps it was a sign— a sign that the Mother wishes for you to take action in order to prevent it.
(If you talk to Silque)
Silque: Ah, Sir Alm. In my travels, I have witnessed the sorry state of our kingdom. With no goddess to bless them and no king to rule, most Zofians are at a loss. And I, for one, refuse to stand by and watch them suffer. I would ask for permission to accompany you on your quest.
(If you refuse)
Silque: Very well. That was not the answer I was hoping for, but I shall respect your decision.
(If you talk again)
Silque: Yes? Do you require my assistance?