An Auspicious Encounter

Featurequest1 Icon.png Lv. 70   An Auspicious Encounter

Journal detail hr1 07.png Acquisition
Soroban: The Ruby Sea - East Othard Coastline - Isari (x:5.7, y:15.8)

Map33 Icon.pngClosest Aetheryte: Onokoro

Journal detail hr1 08.png Requirements
071201.png70Hope on the WavesMainquest1 Icon.png Hope on the Waves (Level 70)

Spacer2.png Disciples of War or Magic (Level 70)

Journal detail hr1 03.png Rewards
Journal detail hr1 04.png Description
Soroban is about to present you with a proposition you would be a fool to refuse.
Journal detail hr1 01.png Objectives
  • Wait for Soroban and Tataru at Hells' Lid.
  • Use the Duty Finder to enter Hells' Lid.
  • Speak with the auspices. 0/3
  • Speak with Genbu.
  • Speak with Byakko.
  • Rendezvous with Byakko in Yanxia.
  • Use the Duty Finder to confront Byakko in the Jade Stoa.
  • Speak with Byakko.
  • Speak with Furi at Hells' Lid.
  • Speak with Genbu.
  • Speak with Bunchin in Tamamizu.
Journal detail hr1 02.png Unlocks Quests
071341.png70Tortoise in TimeFeaturequest1 Icon.png Tortoise in Time (Level 70)

Journal detail hr1 07.png NPCs Involved
Journal detail hr1 08.png Objects Involved

  • Soroban is about to present you with a proposition you would be a fool to refuse.
  • It would seem that the tale of your battle with Susano has reached the ears of a certain esteemed party that has need of your consummate skills. However, as is all too often the case, the anonymous petitioner wishes to put your abilities to the proof before they will divulge further details. Nevertheless, nothing ventured, nothing gained, and so Soroban bids you journey to Hells' Lid, where you are to undertake this preliminary endeavor.
  • Soroban and Tataru join you in Hells' Lid not long after you arrive, and there you discuss the petitioner's curious request: that you “quell the oni dwelling in the deepest depths” of the island. Apparently, the feat would be not unlike that of the legendary hero Tenzen, who is said to have done so with the aid of the “Four Lords”─though perhaps you will only require the assistance of three. In any event, Soroban has opened the hidden passageway into the depths of Hells' Lid, and there is but one way to learn whether or not there is any truth to the faerie tale.
※Hells' Lid can be accessed via the Duty Finder.
  • A host of strange and wondrous beings make every effort to hinder your progress, but ultimately fail to prevent you and your comrades from reaching the mysterious temple at the heart of the island. There you do battle with a wizened sage, who upon his defeat transforms into a rather less intimidating tiny turtle. Lying upon its shell, the creature flails helplessly, unable to right itself...
  • Tataru, having followed in your wake with Soroban, decides to aid the tiny turtle, who formally introduces himself as Genbu. The turtle claims to be the leader of a collective of auspices─animals who have attained a measure of divinity after living a thousand years. Noting you and your companions' skepticism, he bids you speak with the other inhabitants of Reisen Temple and judge for yourself.
  • Though not as verbose as Genbu, the other animals are more than capable of expressing themselves with the spoken word. You learn that it is a gradual process in which they grow in awareness and supernatural strength through the centuries, culminating in what they have dubbed the “change,” at which point the creature is said to become a full-fledged auspice.
  • At the heart of every auspice is a duality: the aramitama, the primal rage; and the nigimitama, the boundless calm. When the balance between the two is disrupted, the auspice may eventually succumb to chaos. Such was the case for Koryu, an immensely powerful being that once threatened to bring calamity to the Ruby Sea, and was in truth the foe that Tenzen and the Four Lords fought at Hells' Lid in another era. But Koryu could not be truly defeated─only sealed away for a time, and Genbu's clairvoyance has led him to believe the wards imprisoning Koryu may soon fail. Therefore the auspice would have you help him prepare for the inevitable conflict by aiding his comrade, Byakko, in quelling the raging aramitama within.
  • The snow white tiger is a harsh judge of character, and for a moment it seems you will not meet with his satisfaction. In the end, however, you remind him of his fallen comrade Tenzen, and so he is willing to entrust his soul into your keeping. Reisen Temple is no place for the battle, Byakko declares, for if he is to risk being wholly consumed by the aramitama, he would gaze one final time upon the lands of his birth in Yanxia.
  • As he muses on his bitter past and how he overcame it to become a guardian to his people, Byakko confesses a measure of fear for what he may become if you and your comrades fail to subdue his aramitama...but you assure him that you will not. Make ready, for the time has come for you and yours to face the legendary auspice in battle and save his soul!
※The Jade Stoa can be accessed via the Duty Finder.
  • The hurly-burly is done─the battle is lost and won. Byakko needs no longer fear for his sanity, for you and yours have subdued his raging aramitama.
  • From birth, Byakko was shunned by man and beast alike for his snow white fur, which marked him a harbinger of doom. Bereft of family and home, he sought solitude to die...but with long years only grew stronger and stranger, which only served to drive others further away. So it would always be, he believed, until one day a man appeared before him, fearless. Tenzen could speak the language of beasts, and for this he, like Byakko, was scorned by all. And so the auspice found a kindred spirit─a traveling companion, with whom he embarked upon many adventures. But those are tales for another time, as Genbu would know the outcome of your battle.
  • Furi, the gatekeeper of Hells' Lid, recognizes you at once. The auspice ushers you inside, urging you to share your tidings with the others at once.
  • In your absence, Genbu has seen fit to train Soroban that he might assist him with the maintenance of the wards holding Koryu in check. Tataru's enthusiasm in overseeing the process calls to mind that of Tenzen, prompting the Scion to inquire what sort of man he was. Genbu confirms that the samurai could speak to beasts, ascribing it to the selfsame power you possess─that of the Echo─and that he was regarded with suspicion by many for it. Nevertheless, he was a kind and generous soul who ultimately gave his life to protect others, using the last of his strength to seal away Koryu while the Four Lords looked on helplessly. Before he died, Tenzen bequeathed to them a sacred crystal, which the auspices speculate may in fact be the source of their powers. In his honor, they built Reisen Temple and resolved to keep watch over Koryu's prison, and have done so to this day. Alas, as Genbu mentioned before, it is only a matter of time before the wards fail and Koryu wreaks untold havoc─unless you can help them to quell the aramitama of their esteemed companions in preparation for the coming fight. For now, however, you have done enough. Soroban, on the other hand, has much work to do...
  • Bunchin is already aware of Soroban's circumstances, having been informed via a missive from Genbu delivered by a most unusual cat. The missive also states that you may come and go as you like from Reisen Temple─a privilege Bunchin encourages you to avail yourself of, as he cannot help but wonder how Soroban will hold up under the strain of such intense training.

You would know more of my venture? Excellent! I should be glad to tell you all I know.

Though perhaps it would be easier to let our anonymous client speak for his or herself. Here, their missive.

For the Ruby Sea and all who call her home, we seek the aid of the warrior who laid low the Lord of the Revel. But first, we bid him make haste to Hells' Lid and quell the oni that dwell in its deepest depths. Should he succeed in this test, we shall speak of the true endeavor and consummate reward.

A strange proposal, aye, though it must be noted that they knew both of your deeds and of our part in them.

The Red have no love of trickery, so I doubt it a trap of theirs. And should this client have honest intentions, then for the sake of these waters, it may behoove us to engage them further.

As for their test─enclosed with the missive was a magicked dagger, along with instructions as to how it may be used to open a hidden passage into the depths of Hells' Lid.

I should mention that this dagger is old and exceedingly valuable. That our client was willing to entrust it to us without a guarantee of our cooperation bespeaks considerable wealth─and more importantly, considerable reward.

If you are willing to undertake their trial, I shall journey to Hells' Lid and prepare to open the path. Ah─but given the financial incentive, I think it for the best if I went and fetched Mistress Tataru. Wait for us there, then?
Quest Accepted
Hope you haven't been waiting long, Forename!
My apologies for the delay. I thought it best to explain everything to Mistress Tataru on the way.

Honestly, all he had to say was that he'd found a way to make up for Alphinaud's obscene expenditures. No matter how reckless or dangerous the scheme, if it balances the ledger, I'm all for it!

So there's a bunch of monsters living beneath us? What kind of place is this?

Well...according to ancient legend, Hells' Lid is where the hero Tenzen defeated a host of oni.

Oni were foul, evil beings that tormented the peoples of the Ruby Sea, and this island was home to many, until Tenzen, together with the Four Lords, drove the oni into the sea.

For his heroic deeds, Tenzen was showered with riches. He then journeyed deep into the mountains, far from the realms of men, and lived in solitude with his companions, happily ever after...
And now Forename's being asked to drive the oni away again?
You misunderstand. What I told you was a faerie tale. To the best of my knowledge, no one has ever seen an oni. If anything, many assume the tale refers to ancestors of the Kojin.
So what you're saying is that you've got no idea what's waiting for us down below. In that case, I'll leave this to the experts! If you need me, I'll be hiding behind that rock over there.
By experts I presume she means you and your adventuring companions? I do hope you were not counting on me to join you in the fight...
It looks in there. I do hope this isn't a bad idea...
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene start.
...Perhaps we should turn him right-side up?
Ohoho! A marvelous performance, truly marvelous—but then you did best the Lord of the Revel...
By the kami! A talking turtle!
I...I don't even know where to begin with that one...

I trust you will forgive me for my deception—'tis something of a Far Eastern tradition, the testing of strength and so forth. A bit rote, perhaps, but anyway! Welcome to the Reisen Temple.

I am Genbu, guardian of this sacred place, and leader of our little collective.

Genbu!? The selfsame Genbu of the Tale of Tenzen? One of the Four Lords?

Under normal circumstances I would assume you named for the legendary being, but clearly this is anything but normal. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would meet a talking turtle...
Ho, but every one of us here can speak your tongue! Is it truly so surprising? After all, we each have lived more than a thousand years.
I-I knew turtles were long-lived, but I had no idea that was even possible...

In this wondrous land of ours, it is said that a beast which lives a thousand years attains a measure of divinity. This temple is a place where such auspices may gather.

But take not my word for it—speak with my comrades and learn their tales. We will talk of the endeavor after.
We may as well do what he says. Besides, who knows what valuable secrets some thousand-year-old animals may know?
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene end.
Shall we return to the temple?
Enter Reisen Temple?
You wish to return to the surface?
Leave Reisen Temple?

Judging from the way you and that woman are gawping, I'm guessing you're not from around here?

Don't know how it is in your homeland, but here, if an animal manages to survive a hundred years, it begins to get ideas. Delusions of grandeur. Some small power, sure, but nothing much to speak of.

Survive ten times that and you become a full-fledged auspice, though. Speech! Magicks! It's quite the change, believe me, which is why we call it...the change. What? I never said it was something clever.

Anyway! Point is, don't let our appearances fool you. I could kill you five times before you hit the ground. But I won't, on account of me being civil. For now.
You meet Byakko yet? Big ol' bastard, he is, but with a heart like a kitten. But, uh...don't tell him I told you that.

A friend of mine, Tamamo Gozen, once called this place home. Possessed of nine tails, her power far eclipsed my own.

But one day she left to live amongst man. What became of her, I wonder...
If you chance to meet Tamamo Gozen, I pray you tell her that we all miss her dearly.

Hey! That hurt! You didn't have to give it everything you had in that fight, you know. I only just went through the change, so it's not like I was gonna slow you down that much...

Well, I suppose you didn't know it was all for show...and I was probably really intimidating... Oh, right─you were asking about the collective, weren't you?

Let's see...Genbu's the oldest of us─oldest in the Far East, too, I think. One of the Four Lords, so as you can imagine he's much more powerful than regular ol' auspices like me. Ah, but you probably knew all that already...
Genbu may be the oldest, but Byakko's got to be the fuzziest. Not the most impressive claim to fame, but hey, you work with what you've got, am I right?
Please, converse with the others. We can speak of the endeavor once you have a greater understanding of who we are.
How much more of the old tales are true...?
Don't talk to me, Forename! Talk to the cat...or the weasel. And what does the fox have to say?
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene start.

Now that you have a greater understanding of who we are, I shall tell you of the rather thorny predicament we now face.

The divinity of we auspices manifests in myriad ways. For example, I possess clairvoyance.

And with my preternatural power have I seen a vision of the Ruby Sea─of Yanxia, of Hingashi─subsumed by roaring flames.

This is no distant future, I fear, and if we are to avert it, we must needs enlist the assistance of an exemplary warrior─one such as he who faced the Lord of the Revel and lived.
What should we do? What should we do!?

Fear not, little one, for I have a plan. But to understand it, you must first understand the duality which lies at the heart of we auspices.

The aramitama─the primal rage─and the nigimitama─the boundless calm. These elemental forces comprise the soul of an auspice, and it is only when they are in balance that we are truly ourselves.

Alas, over great spans of time, or when caught in the midst of tumultuous events, this balance may be disrupted, and the soul may be divided.

An auspice overcome by the aramitama is a wild, feral thing, all the more dangerous for their divinity. Calamity and catastrophe invariably follow─tremors and floods which destroy men's works.
Auspices can bring about these natural disasters? How frightening...
Perhaps, but you must remember that there are auspices who delight in aiding the peoples of these lands─auspices who may have even wreaked havoc in the past. Recall you the tale of Tenzen and the Four Lords?
The one Soroban told us before? About a samurai and the auspices who drove the oni from this island into the sea?

Just so. Yet I fear his accounting of events is not quite accurate, for it was not oni we and Tenzen cast out from this place, but an auspice.

An auspice with the power to move heaven and earth─Koryu. Wholly consumed by the aramitama, he stoked the flames in this island's heart until it very nearly erupted in a fiery maelstrom.

Tenzen led us in battle against our mad brother, and together we sealed him in this temple.

But as the truth of the tale fades from memory, so too do our wards weaken, I fear. Should Koryu break free, he may well finish what he began, and ensure my vision of flames comes to pass.
So...long story short, you want Forename to give this Koryu what for when he wakes up?

I should think not! His accomplishments notwithstanding, it would be foolish for any mortal to face Koryu without proper assistance. To wit, that of the Four Lords!

Regrettably, I am not the young auspice I once was. And to make matters worse, my three compeers have nearly succumbed to the aramitama.
Kami forfend! Three of the Four Lords have gone mad!? The Ruby Sea is doomed!

Nearly succumbed! Nearly! Alas, in marshaling their strength to retain control, they are unable to commit their powers to the preservation of the wards holding Koryu in his prison.

And now that you have a full and complete understanding of the situation, we may at last discuss your part in all this, warrior. I would have you and your comrades face mine in battle and quell their raging aramitama. What say you?
What will you say?
Very well, if that is the only way. So I don't get to kill them? Well, it's still something...

Ohoho! You are an intriguing one, aren't you? We are grateful for your assistance. Let us brook no further delay and introduce you to another of the Four Lords.

I informed Byakko of your arrival when you first entered our domain. He should be returning any moment now. Come, come!
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene end.
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Old friend. The day of reckoning draws nigh.
The wards will fail, and Koryu will break free. Before he does, you must quell the raging aramitama in your soul. This warrior will help─doubt not his strength, for he has danced with Susano himself.
A bold, audacious claim...yet if Genbu believes it true... Aye, the more I look at you, the more of him I see... A similar presence, perchance. A light. Very well. I will bow to my brother's judgment.
Wonderful! Then without further ado, I shall bid my comrade relax and surrender to the aramitama─
Wh-What!? Here? Now!? Won't he go on a murderous rampage!?

Why yes, that's rather the point. He will be reduced to the feral beast.

And then it will be...Forename, was it? Forename's turn to do battle with my brother and help him quell the fury within!
But if all it takes to quell the aramitama is battle, then why did you not do the same for Koryu? Why seal him away?
Because it was too late. As I said, Koryu was wholly consumed by the aramitama. Naught remained of the nigimitama. All that he was...was forever lost to us.

The effort I expend to hold back the fury I will instead use to safeguard the calm. It is then you must act. But know that if you fail, it will only hasten my fall.

My soul is in your keeping, Forename. Do you understand?

Then let us quit this place. Genbu may not mind the chaos, but if I am to wager my everything, I prefer to do so in the land of my birth. To look on those familiar wilds with eyes that may soon belong to another...
When you return to the island, look for Furi. He will guide you back here.
Given the circumstances, perhaps it is best that we stay here. Would that be acceptable?
Ohoho! Soroban, was it? Be at ease. I have a task for you and your excitable urchin. Follow me!
...Did that tiny talking turtle just insult me?
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene end.
Don't be shy. He doesn't bite. Not without cause, at the very least.
A magnificent coat of fur that shimmers as snow. As befits Byakko, the white tiger of legend!
He's...quite a bit bigger than the other animals, isn't he?
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene start.

...We are here.

My earliest memories are not pleasant. From birth I was shunned by man and beast alike, for my snow white fur marked me a harbinger of doom. Cast out and hunted, I struggled to survive.

But I endured. I grew older and wiser, and one day, I resolved to protect this place and those that call it home, for in spite of everything, it was mine as well.

In time they came to see me as a guardian instead of a demon. And yet, for all I have done to rise above the beast within, I may fall to madness and become the sum of their fears...
What will you say?
Have faith. You will not fall. I've bested kami, you know. You're in good hands.

Such confidence from one so young! But as age in of itself does not confer wisdom, nor does youth go hand in hand with hubris.

I warn you: for centuries has my aramitama grown and festered. Hold nothing back, for I will not.

Warrior! The time has come for you and yours to make ready. May the kami grant you strength to save my soul!
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene end.
I have no doubt you will succeed.
I do wonder what he will ask of us...
I would go with you if I could, believe you me, but it seems we're needed here. Best of luck to you, Forename!
You are indeed the warrior they say. Not unlike him, in many respects...
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene start.

'Twas in another era that we first met, him and I. Long, long before the kingdom of Doma...

I told you before of my past─of how I was shunned by man and beast alike for the snow white fur that marked me as a harbinger of doom.

Bereft of family and friendship, of home, I wandered the mountains in search of a place to call my own. There I would accept my fate and await the inevitable.

But death did not come, for I was unlike my brothers in more respects than my fur. With every century I grew stronger and stranger. Monstrous. In turn, what few creatures dared traverse my domain withdrew further and further.

Never had I been so alone...

And then one day I awoke to find a man standing before me. Bewildered, I rose and bared my fangs as I roared in rage.

"Begone, or I shall rend you asunder and feast on your flesh! What fool has the temerity to approach me thus!?“

But the man did not flee. Rather, he stood his ground and said, “This fool is named Tenzen, and ever since he was a child he spoke the language of beasts.”

"Then you know full well what you stand to lose. Return to your people or die!“

But Tenzen threw back his head and laughed! “They would kill me if I dared! For fear of my talents, I was banished! A harbinger of doom, they called me!”

In that instant, all my anger drained away. Tenzen's words had struck at the heart of me. Here was a fellow outcast, cursed by his kin for his very nature.

That night, as I listened to his snoring, I realized I had found in this man a kindred spirit...

Soon after we embarked on a journey together. In the days that followed we met other solitary souls and aided them as we had aided each other...

...But those are tales for another time. I doubt very much you are willing to stand here in silence while I recount my every adventure with Tenzen.

Come, let us return to the temple. Genbu is doubtless eager to learn the outcome of our battle.
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No need to explain─Genbu's told me all about you and the thrashing you gave him and the others! Need me to escort you back to the temple?
Proceed to Reisen Temple?
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene start.
Well done, Forename, well done! You have done my friend a great kindness─one we shall not soon forget.
What will you say?
What exactly did you ask Soroban to do? I'm not sure what's going on, and I'm afraid to ask...
Ohoho, you needn't be so concerned. You know well the power of the Kojin's incantations, yes? I have but asked Soroban to undergo a little training that he might assist us with the maintenance of the wards. He has demonstrated a remarkable aptitude thus far, in fact!
<huff> <puff> much longer must I continue...?
Concentrate! Less chatting more chanting!
What youthful energy! It has been far too long since we had the pleasure of such company. Not since Tenzen, I imagine.
I've been meaning to ask. What sort of man was Tenzen? We only just learned the stories, and you've already said they were half-wrong.

Curious, are you? Very good, very good. Far too many people have no interest in the past...

What to say, what to say... Well, for one, Tenzen was blessed with the selfsame power Forename possesses─the Echo, I believe it is sometimes called?

Alas, as you probably know from personal experience, such individuals are often regarded with suspicion, if not outright fear. Nevertheless, Tenzen was a generous soul who was ever eager to aid his fellow man.

Indeed, he died as he lived─fighting for the sake of those he loved. You see, when he faced Koryu, we Four Lords were still quite young and weak─not even auspices, in truth─and we could but look on helplessly as the two dragged one another to the brink of death.

With the last of his strength, Tenzen imprisoned the mortally wounded Koryu. He then bequeathed to us a sacred treasure: a crystal which shone with an otherworldly light.

Oft have I wondered if this crystal was the source of the powers we would grow to possess. Would we have become the Four Lords without it? In my heart, I think not.

We built this temple to strengthen the wards and safeguard the Ruby Sea in Tenzen's stead. His legacy would be ours, and so it has been to this day.

And so it will continue to be─but only if we can rely upon you to quell the aramitama of our comrades!

That can wait, though. Byakko needs his rest, and so do you, Forename.
In that case, it'd probably be for the best if I went back to Kugane. There's no telling what mischief that man'll get up to in my absence...
I too should take my leave. Doubtless I am needed in Tamamizu...
Ohoho, you're not going anywhere! Your training is far from finished, my friend!

But...But I...can't possibly refuse the request of the Four Lords, can I... <sigh>

I hate to impose upon you, Forename, but perhaps you can go to Tamamizu in my stead? It may be some time before I am permitted to return home...
Player7 Icon.png Cutscene end.
Far too long has it been since I had the opportunity to unleash my full potential. Stakes notwithstanding, it was a pleasure, warrior.
<huff> <puff> (Never...never meet your heroes, my friend...)
Please do not disturb us, Forename! We're in the middle of a very important training session!

...Hmm? So Soroban will be staying with Genbu for a time? How wonderful to hear! I have no doubt he will make the most of his most blessed opportunity.

Oh, I have another missive for you. 'Twas delivered personally by an unusual cat─an auspice, I presume?

You are welcome to come and go from the temple as you like. Furi will remain at his post above ground. You need only seek him out.

I should be glad if you take him up on his invitation and look in on Soroban every now and then. After all, he is in essence our representative there!
Quest Completed
You have done more than enough for one day, Forename. For now, you and Byakko should rest. Oh, and if you have any questions about this or that, Senri should be glad to entertain them.
Peace reigns in my heart once more. Such tranquility, such serenity...
I should be most grateful if you were to tell the elder of my plight─ Er, that is to say, this great...honor...which has been bestowed upon me by the Four Lords...
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