Ephraim: Duessel, can we speak?
Duessel: Oh, Prince Ephraim. Of course, my friend.
Ephraim: I feel I should apologize for making you side against Grado in this.
Duessel: Bah. What nonsense! Please, use me however you would to end this war.
Ephraim: I want you to know how honored I am to fight at your side again. Show me a little of your skill with the spear, like when you taught me.
Duessel: Hmm… Ephraim, your skills have grown significantly since then. Why, the first time I met you, you could hardly hold a spear! I couldn’t even bring myself to lie and say you weren’t THAT bad!
Ephraim: …There’s no need to be cruel! I realize how helpless I was then.
Duessel: Let me finish! Even then, your strong will was most impressive. On your first day wielding a spear, you chose to challenge ME! I remember how enthusiastic your attack was. You were determined to win. But…you were destined to lose that day. Still, I was quite shocked. You weren’t trying to learn my skill. You were trying to steal it from me! And I thought an apprentice was supposed to be obedient to his master.
Ephraim: When you fight, you must respect your opponent, not obey him. …Besides, you knocked me out so quickly, I hardly touched you.
Duessel: I never dreamed of testing my skills against a prince of Renais. After that match, though… Oh, I changed my mind. I knew it would be interesting to teach my skills to someone like you.
Ephraim: Now, you’re the one speaking nonsense! Ah, I know… Let’s duel again after this battle! I’m older now, better trained. I’m sure I can beat you this time.
Duessel: Hmmm… Yes, fine. I’d like to see if you’ve been keeping up with your training.
Ephraim: Duessel, do you have a moment?
Duessel: Oh, Ephraim. Of course.
Ephraim: …Were you thinking about Grado just now? You looked distracted. I wonder, was it the wrong decision to send you fighting against Grado?
Duessel: …You’ve no need to worry. My reasons for leaving Grado are my own. It doesn’t matter who I’m fighting. My resolve won’t be weakened.
Ephraim: That is good to hear… Actually, I’m here for a rematch. I have no idea how you beat me last time, but this time, I can do it!
Duessel: Hmm. It looks like you haven’t learned your lesson yet. You know, they used to call me Obsidian. I was one of the Imperial Three. I’m not about to let a young punk like you best me at the spear!
Duessel: Nicely done, Ephraim. There’s nothing left for me to teach you, it seems.
Ephraim: That’s utter nonsense. I still have much to learn from you, Duessel. I intend to be the greatest spearman Magvel has ever known. I gave up on swords after seeing how they fare against spears. Sword, axe, spear, bow…and even magic. I’ve seen them all. The spear always comes out on top. And I want mine to be the best spear around.
Duessel: Hm… That’s a bold statement. But you may yet be the one who can prove it true, lad.
Ephraim: …I thank you, Duessel. It’s only because of the skills you gave me that I’m alive and here now. Our countries were friends, but you taught me like family…
Duessel: I am a warrior. All I can do is improve my skills and pass them on to a student. And if you best me using the skills that I taught you, well… That’s just the nature of war. The young surpass the old. And I am glad to be fighting at the side of such a worthy student.
Duessel: I know that I’ve been branded a traitor. I’m prepared for that. But I do have one regret… I regret that I betrayed my emperor…
Ephraim: You never betrayed him. You remain as loyal to him now as when you swore your oaths. No, it is Grado who has betrayed the ideals it once held dear. And now, as then, you are my teacher. Nothing has changed. No, you are no traitor. If anything, you are the last true man of Grado.
Duessel: Ephraim… Hm… Yes. A student should not inspire his teacher. Ephraim. Be strong. Remain true. Believe in yourself, and act in accordance with your beliefs. …No matter what happens, be a strong king.
Ephraim: Yes, you needn’t worry about that. Such has been my intention since the day I first held this spear. No matter what the future holds… I’m never going to change. I will let my faith and my beliefs drive my every action as king.