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A Spectacle for the Ages

«Choices

For Those We Can Yet Save»

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Ishgard

Foundation

Congregation of Our Knights Most Heavenly

Mayhap I ought to fight for the other side─you know, even the odds.
Ser Aymeric informs me that the Alliance leaders have agreed to his proposal. The grand melee will be held here, in the shadow of the Gates of Judgement, and in sight of the capital. An announcement has been made, and allied forces are currently en route. The eyes of Ishgard are upon us, Forename. We must not fail.
A rare opportunity to see you pit yourself against allied forces─outside of Carteneau, perhaps. I would not miss this for the world.

Coerthas Central Highlands

Whitebrim

Gates of Judgement

'Tis a matter of pride for the Alliance as well. They will not scruple to send their best against us. Yet we must not be cowed. Too much rests on our success.
The second commander and Hilda's lieutenants shall see to the security of the city in my absence. The melee demands my undivided attention.
It ain't often highborn dandies deign to fight alongside us hoi polloi. Like all our namedays rolled into one, it is. Then again, it's our national pride that's at stake. National and personal. I ain't about to let a snotty-nosed lordling show me up.
It looks to be a veritable who's who of the Eorzean Alliance. The only question is: who came to watch and who came to fight? Hmm...Nanamo. Definitely Nanamo.
Flame Herald
Lieutenant
Surname
, you honor us with your presence. There is a scurrilous rumor going around that you will be taking the field with the Ishgardians. It, uh... It isn't true, is it?
The field has been made ready. All that remains is for the participants to assemble.
Temple Knights fighting side by side with humble watchmen... A queer sight, but somehow...right.
There he is! I say, when you didn't appear, I began to question... N-Nothing! Never mind! Ahem. To think that we are mere moments away from facing the cream of Eorzea's soldiery in battle. That I am...mere...mmm... But what if...? Oh, what am I saying!? I have to stop imagining the worst! I must think of the victory, of the glory! Of the stories I will tell Honoroit when he awakes!
I am ready, old boy! Are you!? By the Fury, how could I forget? Father bid me present this to you. I know it is sudden, but we believe the men would find it inspiring if you bore the colors of House Fortemps into battle. Pray do us this honor.
Let all here present heed well the rules of engagement! For the honor and the glory of Ishgard!
All is ready, then. Very well. Brave men and women of the Eorzean Alliance. Let the grand melee begin!
Flustered Temple Knight
Cyclops! Cyclops! Everyone, on your guard!
All forces, fall back!
Continue the melee! I will deal with him!
Hmph. Daft sod...
You heard the man! Back to it!
All forces, form a line on Forename! Now!
Well met
Lieutenant
. I will not lie─I was hoping it would come to this.
So then...shall we dance?
Damn it all!


Did...did he win? Then we...we...
Victory is ours! Ishgard! Ishgard! Well fought! Well fought, my friend! You truly are the warrior of warriors! Thank the Fury you were on our side!
Hah hah...my lungs are burning, and I can barely stand! I didn't think I could do it...but then I did! We did! We faced the Alliance's best, and together, with one heart, with one purpose, we prevailed! After a thousand years of hardship, of strife and bloodshed, we are strong enough to rise to any challenge─be it on the battlefield or beyond. The future holds so much promise. So much joy. We need only show them the way.
A truly magnificent display, ser knight. While doubtless less than pleased, I am quite sure the Grand Companies are honored to have been bested by such valiant warriors.
The honor was ours, Your Grace.
I am pleased to see that Ishgard's proud martial tradition is being upheld. When the time comes, I trust you will fight alongside your brothers and sisters in the Eorzean Alliance with the same fervor you displayed in opposing them. I note that our friend elected to take the field in Ishgardian colors.
At my behest, Your Grace. If we have given offense, the blame lies with me.
Fear not, ser knight. It was a surprise, nothing more. And any hint of ill-feeling was thoroughly dispelled by the spectacle of our mutual friend's duel with General Raubahn. On the subject of surprises, I could not help but marvel at the passion and unity of purpose displayed by your countrymen...given the troubling reports we have received of late.
I shall take that as a compliment, Your Grace. The events to which you allude are the price of change. The end of the Dragonsong War marks the beginning of a new era for our nation─and for the people, high and lowborn alike, who will lead her into the future.
Ah, yes... The people. Change is indeed a perilous thing, for we who seek it and they who fear it. I shall pray for Ishgard─and for you.
Well, that made for a refreshing change. Congratulations on your victory, by the way. The Ishgardians certainly seem happy with themselves. I, for my part, am merely glad you did not strain anything in the process of singlehandedly winning the battle for them.
<gasp> 'Tis but a scratch, I assure you. And I will not suffer you to worry over me─not when we have a dozen far more important concerns. ...Make that two dozen. Still, as Y'shtola never tires of telling me, we can but face them head on, one at a time. One day at a time...as Minfilia would have done.


As long as I live, I shall never forget that duel. It was inspiring and humbling in equal measure. I feel honor bound to point out, however, that my father was fighting one-handed.
I believe the Flame General would like a word.
I confess, it stung my pride to be brushed aside so easily. But when the flames subsided, and I saw you standing there triumphant, there was only gladness in my heart.
The messengers have already been dispatched. Let us pray that this victory has the desired effect.
That was just another battle for you, I bet, but for my lot... Hmph. It weren't so much the fightin' as the not trippin' over each other's feet. His lordship might think about layin' on some actual trainin' for us next time.
What are we waiting for!? We must return to the capital at once and tell them all about our victory!
What a sight! Blades flashing, magicks dazzling─I could scarce make out who had the advantage from one moment to the next. And that duel... By the Fury, I was wringing my hands until the very end! I cannot wait to tell the others!
Never did I doubt! Nay, not for a moment! By the Fury, I could fair burst with pride! Ishgard! Ishgard!
Thal's balls... I had forgotten what it was like to feel so alive! Not since leaving the bloodsands have I had the privilege. Not since the Bull of Ala Mhigo hung up his swords. Back then, the outcome might have been different. But I do not begrudge you your victory. I know how far you have come, how much you have endured. Our fight only confirmed it. We shall have to do this again one day, when time allows. I shall look forward to it. Now go. Go to the Ishgardians and celebrate your victory. You have earned it. Come, Pipin. Her Grace is expecting us.
Lead on, Father!
Said your good-byes? In all the years I have known Raubahn, I cannot recall ever seeing him look so happy in defeat. Well! Everything seems to be falling into place, does it not? The Ishgardians have claimed their symbolic victory, and the Eorzean Alliance has been strengthened in the process. Be proud, Forename. You made this happen.