A Grand Adventure
The Nu Mou seemed such a welcoming folk in Il Mheg. What do you suppose could have driven this one to a life of seclusion?
I'm sick and tired of the Exarch's attempts at selfless sacrifice. If he suggests dying one more time, I swear I'm going to grant him his wish.
A mage of surpassing skill living a life of seclusion. Now where have I heard that before? One can only hope they are more receptive to unsolicited visitations.
'Tis said the Kingdom of Voeburt was once home to the realm's greatest knights and magicks both.
To command a place at the royal court, the Nu Mou whom we seek must needs have been a mage among mages.
The Grand Cosmos--that is, the palace we seek--stands on the opposite shore of the Source. I will arrange for a boat to carry us there.
Whilst thou journeyest thither, I think it best that I devote mine energies to the creation of white auracite--by thy leave, of course. The process requireth no small amount of time, and should the Nu Mou consent to lend us their aid, we will have need of a suitable vessel ere long.
Agreed. Then I would ask the rest of you to meet me in Sullen. And...do be prepared for a warm reception.
Pray join the others in Sullen. I shall turn my thoughts to the auracite, and apprise Thancred and Ryne of our progress.
I was relieved to hear the Exarch intended to arrange for a boat to carry us across the lake. N-Not that I would be opposed to swimming, mind you.
The Exarch said to prepare for a warm reception at the palace. Let's hope it's more cordial than his last visit.
He said the palace is on the opposite shore, but I see nothing on the horizon save empty sky. Curious...
As I told you before, I had scarcely set foot on the palace grounds when I was set upon by our host's familiars, and I expect our reception today to be no different. Which is why I propose we march through the main gate, weapons drawn.
I'm sorry, but are we not here to petition for assistance? You can't honestly think barging in looking for a fight is going to persuade them.
Actually, I believe the Exarch may have the right of it.
They have no doubt poured a great deal of time and energy into their creations. Were I them, I should be most interested to meet with those who could overcome my defenses.
As would any true seeker of knowledge. And there is little we can say or do to convince them to help us if we know nothing of their character, nor less why they chose to hide themself from the world.
But if we can seize their interest, mayhap we can earn ourselves an audience.
Weapons drawn it is, then.
Though I must say, Exarch, you certainly seem to be enjoying all of this.
Do I? Well, I will not deny that I enjoy the thought of fighting alongside you all rather than pacing about inside the Crystal Tower.
You both seem to be in rather high spirits, if you ask me. Not that I'm surprised. Your moods invariably improve when Forename is around.
Uh--What exactly are you implying?
He averted a Calamity, and the Light which seemed destined to consume him has been extinguished. 'Tis only natural that we be pleased to see him.
Yes, well, you will have plenty of time to celebrate his good health after we've finished here.
O-Of course. Then let us proceed to the palace.
How long has it been since we last went on such an expedition? I cannot help but be reminded of the ruins of Skalla...
I think we've done enough talking, don't you? We have a Nu Mou to impress.
I can but imagine what manner of beasts keep guard here. No doubt they will afford us scant opportunity to explore the palace. A pity...
'Tis good to be here with you for a change. Whatever you would have me do, you need but say the word.
That was my fiercest familiar. Impressive...
Beq Lugg. Tis good to see you again after all these years.
And judging by your vigorous greeting, I daresay the feeling is mutual. To be sure, a simple shake of the hand would have sufficed by way of welcome, but I shan't complain.
But you must be wondering as to the purpose of your visit. We come to beg your assistance in a most urgent matter.
Our comrades' very souls are in danger. If we are to save them, we will need the benefit of your unsurpassed knowledge on the matter. Please, will you not sit and hear our plea?
Oh... How dare you. How dare you speak thus in my presence.
It was to escape such words of temptation that I hid myself from the world of men...
You are sinners one and all, and I swore never again to have any part in your affairs.
I can only imagine what terrible events forced you into a life of seclusion...
But I know that the Nu Mou are a good and noble folk. It is not in your nature to turn a blind eye to the plight of those around you. And in treating with us, I am certain whatever mistrust you feel for man will begin to...heel.
If you will not be satisfied... I suppose I could listen... After all, there's no harm in just--
No! No, no no! I musn't again...
That damned court mage seemed to have the best of intentions too, and countless innocents died for my naivety!
You know not what you ask of me. What horror my knowledge has wrought...
Refuse all you want! We won't lie down and accept defeat!
We would never misuse it!
You mean the magical plague of Voeburt?
Oh, very well...
I will hear your petition, but that is all! And I expect fitting payment for my troubles...
Commensurate with your contribution to our cause. No more and no less, I promise you.
With that settled--might I impose upon you to join us at the Crystarium? I'm afraid the nature of my friends' predicament calls for absolute secrecy.
There you are. The others have gone ahead to the Crystal Tower with Beq Lugg.
For the record, I truly wish we hadn't had to resort to using such words when treating with them. I have ever sought to convince, not compel. Yet I cannot deny that a part of me is glad Urianger shared his knowledge of the Nu Mou with us. Had he not, Beq Lugg wouldn't be here.
Speaking of whom--we should hurry. To keep our guest waiting would only add insult to injury.