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Storm on the Horizon

«Elation and Trepidation

His Forgotten Home»

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While you were out searching for Jifuya, we received word from our shinobi allies: an imperial airship has been sighted over Doman soil.

Our visitors' objective remains unclear. It may be another attempt to recover Yotsuyu...or a prelude to invasion.

Either way, the craft reportedly advances at speed, and appears bound for Castrum Fluminis. I mean to go there and ascertain their intent.

If we ride out in force, it will only end one way, so we shall keep our numbers to a minimum. Yugiri, Forename─can I count on you?
Yes, my lord.
Alisaie and I would fain play our part as well. We will not stand idly by while a common foe threatens the lands of our friends and allies.

We would be glad of the help. You are acquainted with Hakuro, I believe? Then I bid you seek him out and assist in maintaining order in the enclave.

When the people see an imperial airship, they are liable to panic. I would have you reassure them, and, should it come to it, aid in their evacuation.
Very well. We shall depart at once. Do take care.
What of me, my lord?
The Empire may well be after Yotsuyu. You are to remain here and guard her until my return.
...As you wish. Pray stay close to Forename and Yugiri.

Well, well... Guard duty and not a breath of protest. Now I have seen it all.

To Castrum Fluminis, then. Let us find out what the Empire's game is.
Quest Accepted
It is as Lord Hien says. The Empire is on the move. And we, as ever, find ourselves on the back foot...
Jifuya can't be the only one here with a mortal fear of Yotsuyu. She tormented these people.
That her mere presence should sow such strife...
Lord Hien and Master Alphinaud look troubled... Something is afoot.

The area is secure. Whatever our visitors' purpose, they plainly believe they can achieve it alone.

The craft should come into view at any moment. Let us await them inside the castrum.
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Doma is ill-equipped to deal with an aerial offensive. Should the Empire be so minded, the Xaela's flying mounts would be our only hope.

We shall escort our guests across the river to the enclave.

Yugiri, pray go on ahead to the Yuzuka Manor docks and see that the ferries are ready.
Peace... After all they have done. Never has the word rung more hollow.
I say, do I stand in the presence of the fabled eikon-slayer? What an honor.
Lord Hien is magnanimous in victory. Given our nations' troubled history, we did not expect such hospitality.

Lord Hien and I will accompany the imperial delegation on the first ferry.

When you are ready, speak with the boatman and join us on the other side.
Upon disembarking, we will proceed directly to my hall, where we may enjoy some privacy.
Such scenes of devastation greeted us on our journey here... The bitter wages of war.
I have read much about the architecture and geology of Doma... Words do not do it justice.

There you are, Forename. So, first things first: what do you think of the enclave? I must say, I'm quite proud of what my countrymen have accomplished in the time.

We even have an aetheryte now, courtesy of the Onishishu. Be sure and attune to it, would you? Once it has the Warrior of Light's seal of approval, people might actually start using the thing.

But on to the matter at hand: the ambassador and his retinue are at my hall, taking their ease ahead of the negotiations. I want you there when the talking starts.

It will serve to send a message to the Empire that Eorzea and Doma stand united. I am not normally one for hollow posturing, but in this game of nations, such gestures carry weight.

Oh, and should you feel uneasy about speaking for the Scions, Alphinaud and Alisaie will also be there. You need only eat, drink, and look imposing. Say you'll come.

Manual : Insert the correct Q & A's below into a table
then delete me

What will you say?

I'll be there.

Oh, very well.

I knew I could count on you.

It promises to be a dull affair, to be sure, but you have survived far worse.

When you are ready, come and join me at my humble abode, the Kienkan. The guardsman will see you in.
Lord Hien has requested that Master Alphinaud and Mistress Alisaie also be present at the negotiation.
Lord Hien is expecting you. May I show you in?
Enter the Kienkan?
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Lord Hien is expecting you. May I show you in?
Enter the Kienkan?
Well, that was...unexpected.
You can say that again. I still don't know quite what to make of it all. But on the surface, a prisoner exchange does seem a good way to begin. The question is, can they be trusted?

Hm. They had naught to gain by divulging the details of their internal divisions. As it stands, we have no reason to doubt them.

But the ambassador's mention of Yotsuyu left me ill at ease. It made his grand talk of peace seem uncannily like a lengthy preamble.
You think this might all be a ruse to facilitate her retrieval?

Perhaps. Though I cannot fathom why they would go to such lengths. Yotsuyu may have been the acting viceroy, but she is not Garlean, nor even highborn. Her value must presumably lie in what she knows...

...Which brings us to the little matter of her memory loss. In her present condition, she would not yield any worthwhile intelligence. Nor is she worth much as a bargaining piece.

Alphinaud, you are well acquainted with the Empire's methods. I would have your thoughts on this matter.
My knowledge is at your disposal, Lord Hien. While the ambassador's proposal is appealing in principle, it would be remiss of us not to give it due scrutiny.

Indeed. Though it seems to me I have little choice but to accept regardless. With so many of our brothers and sisters languishing in imperial camps, I cannot well turn my back on a chance to secure their repatriation. Only the kami know when I will be afforded another.

...But ere we continue, shall we excuse these two? I fear what follows will bore them to tears.
I was just about to show myself out as it happens. Come on, Forename─let's leave Alphinaud to dispense his copious knowledge.

Someone is still sore from being made to watch at Sakazuki...

Go on and keep Alisaie company. We are safe enough for now.
Lord Hien is expecting you. May I show you in?
Enter the Kienkan?
Whatever Lord Hien's decision should be, I shall abide by it. Yet...I would be glad to welcome my lost brothers back to Doma.
The fact that there are two opposing factions at work in Garlemald complicates matters. Even assuming Asahi and his associates can be trusted, what of the others?
That the Empire should send Yotsuyu's stepbrother of all people... I wonder how he feels, a son of Doma returning home to speak for the oppressors his countrymen drove out.

<sigh> A chance to relax at last.

I know when I'm out of my depth, Forename.

Though no weapons are drawn, a negotiation is no less a battle, and the stakes can be every bit as high. One misplaced word and people could die. It takes someone with a cool head, and I'll be the first to admit that's not me.

So we're left with the eternal question...

What to do while they prattle on?
Quest Completed
Whatever Lord Hien's decision should be, I shall abide by it. Yet...I would be glad to welcome my lost brothers back to Doma.
Worry not, Forename, we shall take care of the rest. Go on and keep Alisaie company.
You've more than earned a rest, my friend. Leave the interminable bits to us.